Last week I was in Albania.  Twenty years ago, Albania was a very poor, backward country.  Today, twenty years later, it is a strong country with a lot of development. Visiting Albanitia makes me feel hope for all countries.

 

AN INTERVIEW WITH AMANDA (girl, age 13) FROM ALBANIA

Nancy:  What have you been doing this week?

Amanda:  I first wake up in the morning and I get ready for school, and the school starts at 8:30.  I have nine classes, forty-five minutes each, in school and they finish at a quarter to four.  Then I come home.  Some days I have an English course or a volleyball course.  On Monday and Thursday, I have an English course, and on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, I have volleyball.  In the weekend, I go shopping or go to the cinema.*  Then in the afternoons I always read a book or do my homework.  In the evening, I always watch TV or get on the computer.

Nancy:  Why do you do volleyball?

Amanda:  Because it’s my favorite sport.  I enjoy it a lot.  I play on the Partizani Voli team.  Now on June first we will start to compete with other teams.  We’re number ten, so we have a lot of work to do.

Nancy:  Why do you take the English course after school?

Amanda:  I study English because I want to go outside of our country to go to school.  I want to become an economist.  I also study English at school.

Nancy:  Where would you like to go to university?

Amanda:  I would like to go to university in Italy.  I would like to work as an economist in a bank and start a new life, like a grownup.

Nancy:  Is there anything else special happening in your life now?

Amanda:   Well, I’m going to do a spelling bee* through the US Embassy.  This is my second time.  Last time I got third place.

Nancy:  Is your life different than your father’s life was when he was thirteen?

Amanda:  Life has changed a lot.  In my father’s time, they didn’t have a lot of things like I do.  My father ate bread and oil.  I eat hamburgers and fast food, so I can’t complain.  Now school is harder than it was then.  I play computer games, but my father played with stones and a plastic ball.

Nancy:  Is there anything that you would like to say to kids in Afghanistan?

Amanda:  We can always look on the bright side.  Things could be worse.*

 

SOME VOCABULARY

Cinema  Americans usually say ‘the movies’ but in British English, people say ‘the cinema.’

Spelling bee  This is a traditional kind of contest to see who can spell the most words correctly.

Look on the bright side.  Things could be worse.  This is a traditional saying and means that we can always see something positive in our situation.  For example, if we have bad shoes, we can think, “Some other people have no feet.  I am happy that I have shoes.”

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

  1.  Life for Miranda is very different from the life her father had as a child.  How is your life different from life when your parents were young?
  2. What are two of the happy things (bright side) in your life?

 

 

 

 

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Replies to This Discussion

I agree!

Thanks dear Nancy!

now war is start is start in afghanistan and if this war finish in the afghanistan so afghanistan will become a improvment country in the world.

Hello madam 

Hope you will be fine and doing, and after along time i am replying to you hope you remember me

According to your first question i will say that my life and parents life when they were young it has a lot of different because if we look technology and facilitates are going day by day better and well .on that time when they were young they was not have somethings that now we have because on that time problems were more like their was no more hospital ,no phones no car and a lot of these things......

According to your second question ....one that i have my parents with me because they are recommending me and another is that i am Muslim.

Best regards

I apologize deeply, Pohan, for being so slow in responding to your message.  I became way, way behind on my email.  Please forgive me.

Your parents are surely very happy that their children can have better conditions now, especially hospitals and more education.  I'm a grandmother, and I am very happy when my children and grandchildren are doing well.  It sounds like you have good parents, and I know they want good things for you.  Good parents are a big blessing in life!

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