Jun 18

Kingdom of Justice

By Khalid Alotaibi

Once upon time, there was a child living in the worst kingdom in the world. The child was born in a small, old house close to the palace of the king. This king treated people badly. He killed those who did not listen to his commands, and he tortured those who wanted to  buy or sell  from his kingdom without his consent. When the child was born, everything changed in the kingdom.

The child was born with special powers. He can smell fear from a far distance. He gives orders to animals, and they listen to him. Edward didn’t know he will use magic in the future. The child did not know about his special powers until something strange happened.

One strange night, the sky was raining heavily, and the sound of thunder was loud. Edward was scared until he heard a voice from afar calling his name. He followed the sound to the woods. Suddenly, he stopped. He looked between the trees. He noticed there was a woman coming towards him. He asked, “Who’s there?” She responded in a soft voice, “I am your angel. I am here to help you.” He asked, “If you are coming to help me, why don’t you show yourself?” She said, “Not now brave boy. I am here to let you know the king will kill you when he knows you have special powers against him. Also, you have special powers that will allow you to kill the king.“ He asked, “ What kind of special powers do I have?” She said, “Follow your heart.”  When the dawn came, he woke up from his dream.

One day, he went to the woods to explore the area. Suddenly, he smelled fear and that made his heart beat fast. He walked towards the smell. Every moment, as he walked towards the smell, his heart was beating more than before. After awhile, a lion appeared in front of him growling in fear. The lion was so scary that made Edward afraid of him. When the lion started to pounce, Edward shouted loudly, “Stop please!” The lion immediately responded to his order. At that moment, Edward really understood that he has special powers. He wanted to know more about his special powers and how he can control these special powers, but he didn’t know the danger that would put him in.

Five years later, the same dream started recurring every month. Edward decided to find the answer to his dream. The next day, he went to see a wise, old man to ask him about his dream. The old man said, “You need to go north until you find the kingdom ruled by the most beautiful woman in the world. You should know something about the Queen. She kills any man who marries any woman from her kingdom because the Queen doesn’t believe in love. Queen Elizabeth rules the Kingdom of Beauty.”

He rode his horse towards the north. He crossed all the deserts. He fought death. He climbed the mountains. He fought dragons. He went over the seas facing storms and sea monsters. He crossed the jungles facing the wild animals. Every time, he almost got killed and faced death.

When he arrived to the Kingdom Of Beauty, he was shocked. The whole population were women. When the gates opened, he walked to the palace to meet Queen Elizabeth. Every woman was more beautiful than the other. Finally, he arrived at the palace, and he asked the guards if he could meet the Queen. After a while, the Queen appeared. He immediately knelt down and kissed her hand. When he raised his head, he was shocked when she started talking. The voice was the same voice in his dream. He asked her to interpret his dream. She agreed to his request. She started to explain his dream, and how he can deal with it.

As a result, she offered to teach him how to use his powers. Day after day, Edward became stronger than before. Edward learned how he can control these special powers. After months of training, Edward was ready to go back to his kingdom.

The king knew Edward went to the Kingdom Of Beauty. He sent a big army led by Lieutenant Alejandro Gonzalez to find Edward and kill him. This army was considered to be the strongest army in the kingdom. The army marched for many months towards the Kingdom of Beauty.

At the same time, Queen Elizabeth realized that she had fallen in love with Edward. When Edward left the kingdom, she missed him a lot, and she felt hollow. She didn’t sleep most nights because she was thinking about him. She was afraid something might happen to him. She cried when Edward left the kingdom, but Edward didn’t know about this true love.

The next day, Queen Elizabeth sent some soldiers to bring him back to her kingdom. She gave the soldiers a message written by her hand. After a few days, the soldiers found Edward sleeping under a big tree. When he woke up, he found the soldiers had arrived with a letter from Queen Elizabeth. He opened the letter, and he was surprised.

The letter said, “Dear Edward, I write these words from my heart and my soul. I love to hear you say my name. I hate to see you sad. I hate to see you mad that makes me feel sad. Love is an empty place without you. I love the way you smile that makes my heart beat hard. Please come back to my heart. Come back to my kingdom. I love you Edward. Yours truly.”

When Edward finished reading the letter, Lt. Gonzalez suddenly appeared in front of him. Edward was scared of facing Lt. Gonzalez with the whole army by himself, so he rode his horse towards the north. He ran for days, and Lt. Gonzalez followed him to the north.

When Edward arrived to the Kingdom Of Beauty, he shouted loudly, “The war is coming! The war is coming!“  When the gates opened, all of the army of the Kingdom of Beauty was incredible. The army contained wizards who rode trees, rode horses of fire and rode on eagles. Other wizards used thunder, clouds, climate and gravity as their weapons.

Lt. Gonzalez was brave to face that army. Lt.Gonzalez launched some attacks that made the battle hard. That battle was unbelievable. Both sides had a lot of losses. However, Edward was doing well in this battle. Queen Elizabeth was worried about Edward and how he was doing in the battle. During the battle, Edward faced Lt. Gonzalez. Edward was seriously wounded in the chest. Queen Elizabeth was so angry that she rode her white horse to the battle. Lt. Gonzalez almost cut off Edward’s head. She threw her sword from a far distance, and the sword struck in the middle of Lt. Gonzalez’s chest.

Queen Elizabeth rode between the dead bodies to see Edward laying in the battle field fighting death. Edward almost died in Queen Elizabeth’s arms. She kissed him and cried on his chest. Suddenly, Edward opened his eyes and felt he was in heaven. Everything was green around Queen Elizabeth.  Her wavy, long, black hair was like a curtain, and her smell was so magnificent that he felt cozy and warm. After awhile, his dizziness left him, and he realized that his love was holding him.

However, the battle was not yet finished.  He stood on his feet again to watch Lt. Gonzalez die. When the Lt.Gonzalez died, the rest of the soldiers ran back to Edward’s home kingdom.

In Edward’s home kingdom, the king was very angry even though he didn’t know what he would do. He was so scared of Edward because Edward had killed his best lieutenant. After a few weeks, Edward arrived at his home kingdom with Queen Elizabeth to fight the king who treated his people like animals or worse. Edward faced the king at his palace. Edward was using magic against the king. Queen Elizabeth was taking care of the army in the kingdom with her wizards. The king was using lions and that was against the king because Edward can subdue the animals. He gave the order for the lions to kill the king. The lions attacked the king and tore him to pieces.

After he killed his king, Edward became the king for the kingdom. Edward became the husband of the queen. They ruled the kingdom through justice and wisdom. The citizens of the kingdom needed to give the kingdom a new name. Days later, the citizens decided to name the kingdom  the Kingdom of Justice.

 

Jun 15

One Evening

By Bader Hamzi

One evening, I was walking at night on my own to my secret place, and I was thinking about life, my family, and my future. This is what my parents taught me, “life needs you to be patient, and believe that God will help us in our troubles. He will make everything good  for us, but we need  to not do bad things. Also, pray to him.” After I did that, I saw that life began to be better.

My family takes up a large part of my thinking. I think that is because I am the eldest male in our house. I feel like I need to take all the responsibility  for them and do everything they need. Also, I want to let my father relax and be comfortable in this part of his life. He already did his best for us, now it is time for him to reap what he sowed.

When I was thinking about my future, I closed my eyes and fled in my fantasy. I saw my beautiful future. I got that nice, big job in  my government  in homeland security. And, I married  that amazing girl.  She is so pretty. I saw my children  playing with me and my wife.

It is really good to think about life, family, and the future. It really makes a  big difference in a person’s future. It gives you the hope you need to begin your new start. If you saw that your future is going to be bad, you have the chance to change it to a good future. If it is good, you can make it better. You have time now. Take advantage of today so that you won’t regret not taking advantage of this moment.

 

 

Jun 05

The War that Changed the Era

By Faisal Algenaeir

Along time ago, Edward Thatch, known as Blackbeard the Pirate, tried to arrest any person who had a highest fee on a criminal wanted list. Because, when he arrests that person, the Marines will make him one of the Seven Warlords. The Seven Warlords are a group of pirates that has the advantage of being uncensored by the government. His purpose is to be one of the four greatest pirates in the world, so he makes his way step by step. The great war begins from here.

Edward Thatch belongs to the Barbarossa pirates, captained by Hayreddin Barbarossa who is on the criminal wanted list for $250 million.  Edward Thatch broke the pirates code when he killed one of his colleagues on the ship just to take the gold and a special  jewel from him. Captain Hayreddin was angry. Edward took a small boat from Barbarossa’s pirate ship and disappeared. After that, the Captain saw an island near them and decided to go to search for him and kill him because Edward broke the pirate’s code by killing his friend, who was the greatest criminal on  the pirate’s ship.

When Edward was  trying to escape from the island, he saw a tourist ship and decided to travel with them. After he escaped, the Captain asked every single person on the island “Did you see a big man with dark clothes and a black beard?”  “Yes sir, he went with a tourist ship to Loguetown Island, perhaps they will reach it after one and half weeks.” said an islander.  The captain decided to follow Edward.

Edward met three men on the tourist ship and told them his plan to rule the world. They had decided to join him. After one and half weeks, they reached Loguetown Island. When they were walking down Main Street, they saw a lot of wanted list posters on the walls. Edward was looking for someone who has a high price on the criminal wanted list. He found a person with a $100 million price on his head, and he decided to look for him.

Meanwhile, Hayreddin is on the rooftops looking for Edward, because he will be able to see Edward better from such a height.  He will find him faster than if he was walking and searching.  Soon, Hayreddin found Edward and shouted down, “Finally, the big rat is here!” When Edward looked up, he saw Hayreddin and said “Ohh, Commander!” The Captain replied “Knock it off! Commander is a word that only those respect me are allowed to say. Stop mocking! It seems now you have become quite a Captain, right? Captain of the Blackbeard pirates, Edward Thatch.” Edward replied, laughing, “What’s wrong, Hayreddin? What’s the matter? How did you know I was here?” Hayreddin said “Edward, stop asking useless questions. You took a man’s life. You must have a comprehension of the current situation. Isn’t that right?” Edward answered “Yeah, I know. Then, let me ask you just one thing. Hayreddin, will you become one of my crew? Rule the world with me. I have already planned every single thing. It is I who will become one of the four greatest pirates! First, I will go to Water Seven Island to kill Straw Hat Ottoman and hand him over to the government.” Hayreddin exclaimed  “Ottoman? What did you say? I won’t let you lay a finger on him. He is my little brother! And, of course I’m not going to be one of your crew.”

Ottoman Barbarossa, known as “Straw Hat Ottoman” because he always wore straw hats,  is the Captain’s little brother who had a $100 million price on his head. When Hayreddin learned about that, he decided to stop Edward and kill him before he did anything.

The duel started. In the beginning the fight was equal between those two pirates. Then, Hayreddin’s fighting experience allowed him to control the duel. However, Blackbeard was known as a perfidious man. When he felt that he will lose the duel, he asked his crew to help him. They shot Hayreddin in his leg and tied him up.  In the end, Edward won the duel by treachery. Then Edward arrested Hayreddin and handed him to the government. The government decided to punish him by penalty of beheading after three days. This fight between those two pirates will be remembered as the trigger for a big event that has yet to come.

When Ottoman learned about his brother’s sentence, he decided to go to Marine Headquarters as soon as possible. Ottoman and his crew went to save Hayreddin, and he told all of the fleets of his big brother to support him. The crew of Hayreddin and one hundred fifty of  the fleet of pirates were on their way to the Marine Headquarters. When they reached there, they saw Hayreddin on the gallows.

The Marine Headquarters was surrounded from the outside by the pirates. Inside the headquarters, in the first line were the soldiers, behind them, a line of Vice Admirals and in the last line, the Seven Warlords and three Admirals.  Behind them was the gallows, and on the gallows, there was Hayreddin and the Commander of the Naval fleet. The war began. The cannon started to shoot from both sides. All of the pirates came down from the ship with guns and swords. Ottoman was surrounded by one hundred pirates whose sole focus was to liberate Hayreddin. After very strenuous fighting between the Marines and the pirates, there were victims on both sides. However, Ottoman and the pirates reached the gallows after many fights to the death. Ottoman was injured. Seven pirates from out of one hundred remained alive. Finally, they liberated Hayreddin. After Ottoman saved Hayreddin, they both ordered all pirates, “Climb the ships men! We got what we came for!” As Hayreddin and his crew ran towards their ships, one of the Marine Admirals ran in pursuit and provoked Hayreddin and made him angry. Hayreddin decided to fight him because if he didn’t, Hayreddin’s brother might die because he was gravely injured and his strength was sapped. Ottoman couldn’t run, and he sat on the field behind his brother. While Hayreddin and the Admiral fought, the Admiral suddenly attacked Ottoman. Hayreddin saved him and took the shot in the chest instead of his brother. Ottoman cried as he held Hayreddin in his arms. Hayreddin said “I can’t speak loud enough for the others to hear it. Please pass  on what I want to say to my crew, everyone and you, Ottoman. Even though I’m so worthless, thank you for loving me!” He was crying as he said these last words. Ottoman cried the most because he loved his brother more than anyone because Hayreddin had taken care of him while Ottoman was growing up. In sum, Hayreddin died. All the fleet was shocked and cried because of Hayreddin’s death. He was like a big brother to all of them.

After his death, the Marines continued the war, and there were victims from both sides. Suddenly, one of the brave soldiers of the Marines came to the Admiral and bawled,  “Stop, already! All this fighting, just end it! We are throwing people’s lives away! Even though every single soldier has a family waiting for them to return! Even though we have already accomplished our goal! We keep chasing pirates who don’t want to fight, drawing out a battle that should already be over, and abandoning soldiers who could be saved if we treated their wounds now! And still, we are sacrificing even more people! What about the soldiers who will fall after this? We are making them look like idiots!”  The admiral roared, “You have wasted several seconds of my time. The Navy has no use for soldiers who aren’t righteous!” The Admiral raised his sword to kill the young soldier. Everyone was shocked.

Suddenly a brave pirate came and stopped the admiral from killing that young soldier. This pirate was Portogas Shanks one of the four greatest pirates in the world. All the Marines and pirates were fearful of him. Portogas said, “You did well, young Marine soldier. You risked your life to create a brief moment of courage. For better or worse, that has greatly changed the fate of the world. I have come to end this war! It will just purposelessly increase the damage on both sides. Those of you who only want to fight more, bring it on! We are happy to fight you! What do you think, Edward? I mean, Blackbeard!” Edward, replied, “I already got what I wanted. And, we are not ready to fight you guys yet.”  Edward and his crew disappeared from the battlefield.

Portogas said to the commander of the Marines, “Let us handle the burial of Hayreddin. The war was broadcast to the world. I won’t let you dishonor his death in public any longer!” All the Marines agreed saying, “That’s ridiculous. We raise a shout of victory by exposing his dead body to public view, and you try to bring disgrace to our victory. We are not going to listen to a pirate!”  The commander of the Marines said, “I agree, only because it is you, Portogas Shank. I will allow it. I will take the blame on myself. Treat the injured now! This war is over!” The fleet commander of the Marines  was respectful and accepted it. In the end, the greatest battle ever since the start of the Great Era of Pirates, the war that began a new era, came to an end. Thus, engraving its place in history forever.

 

 

May 22

My Worst Day Ever

By Meshal Al Kaddash

I want to write about an important story in my life. Everyone has many stories in his life to talk about, but many people do not want to talk about their stories because they will remember their bad experiences. We have to read stories because we will learn from their mistakes. My story is about the worst experience when I was on the flights to the United States (U.S.).

I got a call from my best friend Mushal when I was eating a tasty lunch with my family, and he said,  “Hi Meshal. I want to tell you about the specific time to travel to the U.S. It is tomorrow at 4:30 a.m. You have to be ready.” After that, I was confused because there was no time to sort my luggage and for my friends and my whole family  to see me off. I sorted my luggage into two big bags. Then, I ate my last dinner with my friends. Unfortunately, some of my friends were busy, and I could not see them, so I called them by phone.

My best friend Bander came with me to the airport, and we drank coffee together. Mushal, Faisal, and Mohammed and I were on the same flight.  It was an exhausting flight because we spent fifteen hours on the plane. Our flight had three parts. The first flight, which was two hours, was from the capital city of Saudi Arabia, Riyadh, to the capital city of Qatar, Doha. The second flight, which was eleven hours, was from Doha to New York City. When I was on this flight, I was thinking about many things, such as, missing home and a new culture.The third flight, which was two hours, was from New York City to Richmond. Then, we finally took a taxi from Richmond to Farmville which is where our university is, and we spent one hour and a half on the road to Farmville.

There are many bad days in my life, but that day was my worst day ever because many problems happened. When we arrived at New York City’s airport, I lost my backpack, which had all of my important papers and my passport. It was a big disappointment for me because if you lose your important papers and your passport on the first day for studying abroad, you will be in trouble.

When I lost my backpack, I was thinking about how can I eat or continue my flight to Farmville. I called my boss from Mushal’s phone, and he said, “ Hi Meshal. How are you? How is your flight? Is there any problem with you, or with your friends? ”  I told him the whole story. After that, he said, “You have to tell  your friends do not wait for  you. They have to continue their flight to Farmville.” Mushal gave me his phone and some money. Then, he went to Richmond with Faisal and Mohammed. Next, I tried to find my backpack because if I found it, I will be fine. I called the police, but they did not find it. Fortunately, they gave me a report, which helped me to obtain a new passport. Then, I went to Itena Airline, and they gave me a new ticket from New York City’s airport to Richmond. After that, I flew to Richmond. Then I took a taxi to Farmville. Next, I went to the International Office at Longwood University, which helped me to get new papers and a passport.

In conclusion, I finally arrived in Farmville after many adventures on the road. Even though it was my worst experience, it was a good experience because it was the first time for me to travel abroad. In my opinion, you have to be careful when you travel to another country because perhaps you will have many problems .

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apr 29

The Best Thing That Happened

By Faisal Algenaeir

I was in my class enjoying my lesson. I had missed calls from my father, so I wondered what does my father want from me because he knows I have class now. He knows everything about my daily routine. Again, I was thinking what does my father want? Afterwards, I told my teacher, “My father keeps calling me.”  I want her to allow me to answer the call. Certainly, I answered the call.  “Hello. What’s happened Dad?’’ He said, “ I’ll tell you something very important.’’ Actually, I was very anxious. I asked him, “What happened?” He said, “ Congratulations, your big brother had a baby 30 minutes ago. Now I’m finally a grandfather!’’ My father was extremely happy. I’m happy for him and my big brother.  Now I have a  nephew, and now I’m an uncle. That was the happiest thing that happened when I’m in America.

 

Mar 30

Beautiful Day to Live

By Abdulaziz Bajabr

There is a guy who likes his life. He worked as a waiter in a small restaurant in downtown Manhattan, New York. One day, he was serving in  restaurant. James saw a beautiful girl with her family. The mother asked for a menu. He gave it to her. She asked for  five minutes. It is her first time to be in this restaurant. Five minutes later, James came back. She ordered chicken caesar salad and chicken soup. James said,“Too much chicken today.” The girl laughed. James liked the girl very much. Before she left, she waved her hand at him and said, “Bye.” James did the same to her. James said to his friend, Jack, “She is the one.”  Jack said, “You don’t even know her.”

James was so happy. He saw the most beautiful girl in the world. Every day, he thinks of her. Two weeks later, she came  to say hey. The first one who saw her was Jack. He ran as fast as he could to tell James. When Jack told James, James was so happy. James went to talk with her to see if she needed something. He sat on the table. James asked her, “How are you” She didn’t respond. He asked again,“How are you?” She grabbed a piece of paper and a pencil. She wrote, “ I am fine. What about you?  By the way, my name is Nancy.” He said, “ Why don’t you talk to me?” She said, “I can’t because I am deaf.” He said, “It is ok.” He started to move his hand. She was surprised and said, “How do you know sign language?” He said, “I used to do that with my mother a lot because she was deaf too. She passed away four years ago from brain cancer. She always said ‘It is a beautiful day to live,’ because she was very strong. She fought against cancer for four years.”

James and Nancy started dating. Nancy came from a wealthy family.  Once her mother discovered her daughter was dating a “waiter,” she became very angry not only because Nancy was dating a man with less status but also because she worried that James was after their money.  She grounded her for a month. James was very worried about her because he could not reach her. He called all her friends. No one knew about her. He went to her apartment. He rang the bell. She didn’t answer. He realized there is something wrong. He decided to go to her home. When he arrived there, her mother faced him. He asked for Nancy. Nancy’s mother said she left the country two days ago. He said,”No, I know she is here.” Nancy’s mother said,” James don’t come here again.” James said,” I want to hear it from her.” Nancy’s mother called the bodyguard. They kicked him out. James felt so bad.

He went back to his apartment. He sat on his couch thinking about Nancy. Jack stopped by to see James. He rang the bell. When James stood up, he fell down. When Jack heard the loud thump and crash, he broke into James’ apartment. He called the ambulance. The ambulance took James to the hospital. The doctor x-rayed James and made a life changing discovery. James had brain cancer. James was devastated.  He didn’t want to talk to anyone accept Nancy. Jack called Nancy to tell her what happened to James.  Nancy came after two days to support  him in the hospital.

After months of chemotherapy, James’s hair fell out. He felt so much pain. James repeated what his mother said, “ It is beautiful day to live.”

During that time, Nancy went to the doctor. The doctor said there is a surgery can help you to hear again. Nancy felt disbelief. She felt so scared. She said,” What if it doesn’t work?” She texted  Jack. He said,” Don’t worry everything is going to be alright. Keep your faith with God on.” She said, “ Don’t tell James anything please.” She said,”  I will surprise him. He will be very happy for me.” Jack said, “Sounds good. He is worth it.”

While she is thinking of a good way to surprise James, James is thinking to fight the cancer until the last day of his life. He said “My mother raised me to be a strong guy.” He keeps saying,” I am a strong guy. I am a strong guy.” He nurse heard him shouting I am a strong nice. The nurse said,” Sir you have to settle down It is not good for your health.” She was very nice. She said, ”Yes you are Mr. James. Keep your faith and stay strong. You can make this. You are the strongest person I have ever met.” What the nurse said gave James power and faith.

Nancy was released from the hospital in that time two days later Nancy came to surprise James that she can hear again.

She did not find James. The room was empty! James was dead!.

They gave James the wrong medicine. It made his heart stop beating. He left a letter at the desk. He wrote in the letter,  “Baby, do what your heart tells you to do.Trust no one except your family and friends. Good luck Baby in your life. I love you James. No matter what happens with us, we have to have faith tomorrow is better.God will always  be with us.”

We have to call people who have cancer fighters.  They are  not  normal people like us. God bless them.

 

Feb 25

Do I Like It

by Mohammed Shafi Aldosari

I have been in the U.S. for five months, and someone asked me do I like it. I didn’t answer him I said “let me think about it.”

It’s not like moving from a city to another city.  I’ve moved from a country to another country. It’s very different.  First, there’s the culture.   My country is more conservative than most of the other countries such as U.S.A. So, it’s hard on me.

Then there is the food.  America has more restaurants than home cooked food while Saudi Arabia is the opposite.

In America, there are four main holidays. There is Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s Eve and Independence Day. In Saudi Arabia there are two main holidays. There is eid al-fitr, also called the  “Feast of Breaking the Fast. ” It’s a holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of Ramadan.  And there is eid Al-Adha, also called the “Feast of the Sacrifice. ” It’s also a holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide. It honors the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his promised son.

I’m a Muslim. In my religion eating pork and drinking alcohol is forbidden. In America, a lot of food and drinks contain pork and alcohol, so I have to ask every time if what I’m about to eat or drink contains any of those two. As a Muslim, the only relationship allowed with a girl is marriage, so it’s hard to resist your nature especially, when there are a lot of beautiful girls.

Back in my country, most of the year is hot, and the only time it becomes cold is in the winter. Here, it’s very different.  It’s cold more than it is hot. I like the hot weather more than the cold.

There are a lot of changes. I’m excited and scared. I can say so far so good. Until now, nothing bad has happened. I’m having fun trying new things and converging with the culture.

For me it’s only a visit. And I like it this way.  So to answer his question, yes I like it here, but only as a visit.

Feb 06

Winter Break

by Abdulmajeed Alradhyan

Where did I spend my  winter break? I went to Florida, Washington.DC, New York, Northern Virginia, and back to my home in Central Virginia. I started packing and making my car ready for the trip. Sunday afternoon, December 15, was a wonderful day to start the trip on the afternoon. I drove to the first destination.

My first destination was my friend’s house in Tampa, Florida. I started to drive at 2 p.m. I crossed Richmond during the first hour. I stopped at a gas station to get food and drink. Then after eight hours,  I drove through North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Around 3 a.m, I arrived at my friend’s home. I was so tired, and I slept 12 hours. The weather in Tampa was warm and raining. That was wonderful for me. I  like to sit in a warm places. I visited downtown with my friend, and we went to a very nice Mexican restaurant. The taste and flavor was good. After we finished dinner, we walked downtown.  We spent 3 hours walking and window shopping. Next day, in the morning, I went to Clear Water Beach. That was an amazing beach. The sand was kind of white, and the water was cold. At end of the day, we went to bed because we were so tired. After the last night, in early morning, I ate breakfast. I was ready to visit Orlando DisneyLand (studio). They have many famous Disney characters, such as:  Cinderella, Mickey Mouse, etc.  The children and young people can have their picture taken with them.  After the sunset, it was time to return home. Two days later, I decided to go see Miami Beach. My friends agreed with my idea. We drove five hours  to Miami Beach that day. Before we were arrived,  I made a hotel reservation for four days. We spent all four days on the beach. The weather was warm. There were many people enjoying the beach,  some people tanned, others played soccer, and children had fun with gliders.  And for me, I was relaxing and enjoying the sun. On the last day, we visited downtown Miami, and we went to the shopping center. After we finished of that day, we drove back to Tampa and arrived at my friend’s  house.  That was a wonderful two weeks.  The next day,  I packed my stuff again and left for my second destination, Washington D.C.

My second destination was Washington D.C, the capital city for United States. The weather was cold with some snow. In Washington, D.C.there is the White House which is where Barack Obama, the President of the United States, lives. In Washington D.C., they have a lot of  museums. I didn’t have time to see all of them, but I went to the National  Geographic Museum, that is a good place to look at. I took all day  in Washington D.C to visit the historic landmarks. The next day, when the snow stopped, I went to the Potomac River. There were some people exercising. During that time, I ate my lunch by the river. I spent three days in Washington, DC.

My third destination was New York City. I arrived on December 31st, to celebrate with my friend the New Year. When I arrived, the weather was very cold and windy. There were thousands of people, and the streets were busy with traffic. When we walked towards Times Square, we went in an Arabic restaurant. After we finished eating, we went to Times Square  to see the New Year’s Celebration. After midnight, when the celebration was finished, I returned to Washington D.C. That was my first time to visit New York.

My fourth destination was Northern Virginia. I arrived at 12 p.m. The weather was cold like Washington D.C. In Northern Virginia, I went to Tyson’s Corner Mall, that is a big mall at that area. The Tyson’s Corner Mall  has  three floors, including parking and a cinema theater. I saw fashionable clothes stores.  The next day, I went to an Arabic restaurant, and they had delicious food. When I was in the restaurant, I saw my friends come in. After we finished our food, we hung out together. That was my last day in Northern Virginia.

 Finally, that was an amazing long trip. I visited different states in America. Knowing that my break is over, I returned to Central Virginia to the town of Farmville and back to my starting point.  I’m so glad to be home. Home sweet home.

 

 

Dec 03

Nourah’s Wedding: A Lesson in Love

By Evelin Santis

Friday morning was a sunny day in the city of New York. Nourah Lauder was preparing her luggage to depart to Maldivas Island this coming Tuesday at 8:00 pm to marry the man she loved. Suddenly, she received an unexpected call from her father, the man she had not seen in almost ten years.  He called with horrible news!

The Lauders are a wealthy family. They live in a mansion in one of the wealthiest neighborhoods of New York. Nourah lives with her mother, Nouf, her little sister, Ajaharah, and her stepfather, Mohammed. She prefers to call him “Dad” because for the past ten years he has taken care of her and her sister.  Nourah was planning her wedding for almost six months. Many called it “the wedding of the year.” Only two weeks were left  before the wedding and the news about the wedding between Nourah and Ali, her fiance, was in all the newspapers.

When she received that call from Saad, her biological father, she was confused because he one day just disappeared without saying anything to her and her mother. Saad told her that he wanted to meet with her that day because he had something important to tell her. She agreed to meet with Saad thinking that he would apologize for abandoning them ten years ago. So, she tells him to meet her in one hour in the cafeteria of the mall near to her house. When she saw him, she felt many emotions:  happiness, sadness, irritation, indignation, and  madness. They decided to find a table a part from the people to have privacy. When they sat, Nourah could not stop looking at Saad. She was waiting for her father to apologize for abandoning them. While he did not look at her face at any time, he was thinking about how to give his daughter, whom he had abandoned ten years ago, some very bad news. After a long time of silence, and just when she was about to ask him why he had called her after ten years, Saad slowly raised his face and said “ You can not marry Ali.” She was in shock “ Why are you saying that? How dare you?” Saad looked pale and answered her, “ Because Ali is your brother!”

Nourah spent the weekend locked in her room crying because she can not marry the man she loves and wants to spend the rest of her life with. She did not want to tell anybody about her meeting with Saad. For two days, the Lauder family was worried because Nourah did not come out of her room, and she did not eat anything. On Monday, Nouf worried about not knowing the reason why her daughter was sad, so she decided to go to  Nourah’s room. She saw her daughter staring at the wall, pale,and with very sad eyes. Nouf ran to hug her daughter and both started crying loudly. When they calmed down, Nouf asked Nourah why has she been so sad for the past three days?  Nourah, while crying, decided to tell her mother what her biological father confessed to her. Nouf was shocked and hugged her daughter tightly. When Nourah finally fell asleep, her mother, pale and crying, left Nourah’s room..

Tuesday morning, Nouf was in front of her daughter’s room, undecided whether to knock or not. When she decided to enter to her room, she found her daughter crying and looking at Ali’s photo. At that moment, Nouf decided to tell her daughter the truth.. She sat beside Nourah and hugged her. Nouf looking Nourah and Ali’s photo said “ Honey, there isn’t a problem.  Marry the man you love.” Nourah raised her head and saw her mother crying. Nouf continued, “ I am going to tell you the truth…… that man that you called “Dad” when you were young is not your real father….Saad is  not your biological father.” Nourah was shocked.  Nouf hugged her daughter and whispered in her ear “  Now you can marry. Ali is not brother.” Nourah pulled apart from her mother to look at her face “ What did  you just say!?”  Nouf began to cry desperately. She did not how to explain the story to her daughter. “ I am so sorry Nourah for all these years of  suffering…… for lying all these years…but I did not want you to think bad about me and blame me for my actions in the past.” Nourah did not understand what her mother was saying and why she said all of that now. Nourah had many questions to ask Nouf and she demanded answers right now. “ Mom just tell me all the truth. Why have you lied to me all this time? What else have you lied to me about? Why do you tell me all that just now?” Nouf only cried. The room stayed in silence for a time. Nourah broke the silence and yelled  loudly,  “ WHY?” Nouf took Nourah’s hands and while stroking them began telling her the story.

“Many years ago, I was happy with Saad. I thought everything was perfect between us. But after five years, he began to change. He was not the attentive and affectionate man I fell in love with. He began coming home late, and sometimes he did not sleep at home. When the company that I used to work for decided to send me to Hawaii to organize the first fashion show there, I met Mohammed. He was one of the invited investors to the event. We spent the next two weeks together. During those  two weeks, we started to have feelings for each other but nothing happened because he had a family and I was with Saad at that time. But the last night, he prepared for me a special dinner and one thing led to another. One month later, I was in a waiting room for the pregnancy test. When the doctor said the test  was positive, I did not know what to do. I decided to finish my relationship with Saad and look for Mohammed, the man who made me feel loved again. I spent the next week looking for the right way to end my relationship with Saad when I saw an article in the New York Times that one of the important investors of America was expecting his third son. When I saw Mohamed and his family photo, I knew I just could not get in the middle of that family and destroy it.  So, I decided to continue with Saad and make everyone believe that was Saad’s baby. No one knows this, only Mohammed and now you. We did not tell you anything because we were afraid of your reaction.  I am really sorry honey, my intention was not to hurt you at any moment.”

Nourah was in shock. She did not know how react. She walked to her dresser and took some money and left the room running. Nouf laid in Nourah’s bed and hugged a teddy bear that she had there. Nourah was walking down  the street of New York thinking about all the events that happened the last few days. At some point of her walking, she arrived in Central Park and sat. She was crying and all her make up was destroyed. Everyone who passed by her looked at her and a few people stopped to ask her if she was fine. She still could not believe that her life was built on lies. She spent all the afternoon in the park thinking. Suddenly, she remembered the flight she had to catch. She looked at her watch and  realized that if she wanted to be on time to the airport, she has to run back home. When she arrived at home, she noticed no one was there. She imagined that all her family were already in the airport waiting for the flight to Maldivas Island. While she ran to her room to  grab her luggage, she called for a taxi service to go to the airport. She only had 45 minutes before the plane departed, and her house was 25 minutes away.  All the way to the airport. she pressed the driver to go faster. When she finally arrived at the airport, with 10 minutes to spare,  she paid the driver and began running to the check in line with her big luggage. When she finally  saw her family, and Ali with his mother, waiting for her at the door of Gate 8, she stopped and looked at her mother.  She saw that her mother was devastated emotionally.

Finally, Nourah  realized that something was clear for her all this time. She still loved her mother and nothing was going to change that.  She ran and hugged Nouf and crying told her,  “ I love you and will always love you no matter what. And, I do not have to forgive you for anything because I know you did all what you thought was right in that moment.”

Dec 03

Creativity

By Faris Alotaibi

Creating or inventing new things is not difficult for any person who works hard.  Creativity is a gift from God. Everyone can have it if he or she works hard and tries  to magnify this gift.  Being responsible and self disciplined about what you are talented  in makes you advance better.  There are two kinds of work that can help you to be superior in your creativity.

  • Teamwork

Working together in groups, that are developing the same talent that you have, can help you to learn new things and learn from other group member’s mistakes, as well as your own mistakes.  Working together can make everything easy for you because there are other hands helping and sharing with you.  Cooperation results in successful work because it depends on the diligence of the group members.  Believing in the other members of the group and believing in their possibilities leads teamwork to the best outcome.

  •  Individual work

You can create new things when people help and spur on your ideas.  Creativity comes from confident people.  If you want to be an inventor, or try to create a new things,  you have to trust in yourself and in your potential.

You have to pick your friends who are motivating you because they are the only people who  want you to be better.  Be aware of jealous people because they hate seeing you in a good situation and doing good work.   They don’t like to see you being better than they are.  Just move on,  and do what you do.  Take the good things from your real friends, who really want you to advance, and ignore the criticism from the jealous people, who are critics not motivators.

Pride in self will help you to invent and create.  Do not be afraid with what you doing.  You may not be successful at the beginning, but you have to trust in yourself and be proud about what you did do.

Do not be scared of your fears and don’t care about the critics.

Being creative is not hard if you take the work seriously, and you are responsible and self disciplined.

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