NCERT Solutions for Class 11 English (Hornbill) Chapter 2 We are not afraid to die if we all be together (updated)
|Chapter Name||We are not afraid to die if we all be together|
Page No: 13
1. Notice these expressions in the text. Infer their meaning from the context.
honing our seafaring skills
pinpricks in the vast ocean
a tousled head
honing our seafaring skills: this refers to the efforts made by the author and his wife, to perfect or sharpen their seafaring skills.
ominous silence: the silence here refers to an impending danger.
Mayday calls: Mayday calls are radio-telephonic words which signal aircrafts or ships stuck in a disastrous situation.
pinpricks in the vast ocean: this phrase expresses the search for two small islands in the vast ocean.
a tousled head: this refers to hair in disarray or the disarranged hair of the author’s son, Jonathan
Page No: 18
Understanding the Text
1. List the steps taken by the captain
(i) to protect the ship when rough weather began.
(ii) to check the flooding of the water in the ship.
(i) In order to protect the ship from rough weather, the capitan decided to slow it down. So he dropped the storm jjb and lashed heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stern. Then they doubled fatened everything and went through their life-raft drill
(ii) To check the flooding of water in the ship, he put waterproof hatch covers across the gaping holes which diverted the water to the side. When the two hands pump blocked and electric pump short circuited, he found another electric pump, connected it to an outpipe and started it.
2. Describe the mental condition of the voyagers on 4 and 5 January.
On January 4 and 5, the voyagers felt relieved after rigorous practice of continuous pumping. They had their first meal in almost two days. Their respite was short-lived. They faced dangerous situation on January 5. Fear of deah loomed large. They were under great mental stress.
3. Describe the shifts in the narration of the events as indicated in the three sections of the text. Give a subtitle to each section.
The first section: The first section opens on a cheerful note. The narrator and his family are all set for their ultimate dream- to take up an around-the-world voyage like Captain James Cook did. They have perfected their seafaring skills. They begin the voyage and despite of the bad weather, they celebrate Christmas on the ‘Wavewalker’.
The second section: This part of narration covers the hazards faced by the voyagers. There is a shift in the narration from cheerful to intense. They find themselves in an extremely fatal and disastrous situation. A huge wave hits their boat and the narrator is thrown overboard. Despite getting injured, he maintains his composure and applies every possible way to tackle the critical situation. They manage to pump out maximum amount of water out of the boat in about 36 hours. But as they continue to face bad weather conditions the narrator loses hope. The children remain fearless, courageous and optimistic throughout.
The third section: The children provide moral support to the narrator and he continues with his efforts. Under the captaincy of the narrator, they manage to reach Ile Amsterdam. The narrator proves his seamanship and receives the title of “the best daddy” and “the best captain” from his children.
The above three sections can be subtitled as follows:
a) The first section: Round-the-world voyage begins
b) The second section: The attack of the big wave
c) The third section: Ultimate victory
Talking about the Text
1. What difference did you notice between the reaction of the adults and the children when faced with danger?
There was lot of difference between the way in which the adults and children reacted when faced danger. The adults lose hope and wait for their end with a heavy heart. At this point, they are motivated by the children. The children offer moral support to the adults. They display maturity and tolerance. Jonathan expresses his fearlessness and courage when he says that they are not afraid of dying if they all can be together. Sue expresses her love and gratitude for her parents by making a greeting card. She is strong enough to not let her parents know about her serious injuries. She did not want to bother her parents in the times of crisis.
2. How does the story suggest that optimism helps to endure “the direst stress”?
Optimism is a determination to overcome difficulties. It raises one’s spirits and helps one overcome stress and difficulty with ease. The story displays courage and optimism throughout. Survival happens only because of the optimistic struggle that the family carries on with.
The level of perseverance in the author rises when Jonathan says, “we’re not afraid of dying if we can all be together. Besides, the caricatures of him and Mary, drawn by Sue, helps his determination and optimism to grow many folds. The positive outlook of the children infuses positivity in the narrator. He rigorously calculates their position and finally asks Larry to steer a course of 185 degrees. Though he had lost all hope by then, he did not show it and optimistically told Larry that they would spot the island by about 5 P.M. Fortunately, their struggle and optimism pays off and they manage to find Ile Amsterdam by evening.
3. What lessons do we learn from such hazardous experiences when we are face-to-face with death?
AnswerSuch experiences teach us the potential that courage, perseverance and tolerance hold. It explains how one must react in the direst of the situations. It teaches us that one must never lose hope and try to find reasons to stay positive in the face of adversity. In such situations one must try his/her best to remain calm and composed and understand the power of unity and team work. Moreover, the importance of common sense, putting continuous efforts to overcome the catastrophe and the significance of being extra cautious and careful are learnt from such hazardous experiences.
4. Why do you think people undertake such adventurous expeditions in spite of the risk involved?
The spirit to experience unique elements of nature, undaunted passion and willingness to accept challenges drive people to take up adventurous expeditions. The people who involve themselves in such activities are very well aware of the risk involved in them. But due to their passion and enthusiasm to do something unique and great, they willingly accept such challenges. Also, their desire to be in the lap of nature and experience its beauty pushes them to such expeditions.
Thinking about Language
1. We have come across words like `gale’ and `storm’ in the account. Here are two more words for `storm’: typhoon, cyclone. How many words does your language have for `storm’?
In Hindi, ‘storm’ is known as ‘aandhi’, ‘toofan’ ‘andhad’, etc.
Page No: 19
2. Here are the terms of different kinds of vessels: yacht, boat, canoe, ship, steamer, schooner. Think of similar terms in your language.
‘Naav’, ‘Nauka’, ‘Jahaaz’ and ‘Kishti’ are some of the various words used in Hindi for the word ‘boat’.
3. ‘Catamaran’ is a kind of a boat. Do you know which Indian language this word is derived from? Check the dictionary.
The word ‘Catamaran’ is derived from Tamil word ‘Kattumaram’.
4. Have you heard any boatmen’s songs? What kind of emotions do these songs usually express?
Yes, Boatmen’s songs usually express love and nostalgia. It revolves around the longing to meet a loved one. It may also express their love for the sea.
Working with Words
1. The following words used in the text as ship terminology are also commonly used in another sense. In what contexts would you use the other meaning?
Knot stern boom hatch anchor
Knot: a) interlacing, twining, looping, etc. b) a group of persons.
Stern: firm, strict, uncompromising, harsh, hard etc.
Boom: a) deep, prolonged, resonant sound
b) to progress or flourish
c) to hit hard
Hatch: a) to bring forth, produce.
b) derive, concoct
c) to draw, cut, or engrave lines
Anchor: a) a person or thing that can be relied upon for support
b) host of an event.
2. The following three compound words end in-ship. What does each of them mean?
airship flagship lightship
Airship: It is a self-propelled lighter-than-air aircraft with the means of controlling the direction of the flight.
Flagship: It is a ship carrying the flag officer or the commander of a fleet, squadron. It displays the officer’s flag.
Lightship: It refers to a ship anchored in a specific location flashing a very bright light for the guidance of ships, as in avoiding dangerous areas.
3. The following are the meaning listed in the dictionary against the phrase `take on’. In which meaning is it used in the third paragraph of the account:
|Take on sth:||to begin to have a particular quality or appearance; to assume sth|
|take sb on:||to employ sb; to engage sb|
to accept sb as one’s opponent in a game,contest or conflict
|Take sb/sth on:||to decide to do sth; to allow sth/sb to enter e.g. a bus, plane or ship; to take sth/sb on board|
In the third paragraph, in lines: “… we took on two crewman to help us tackle … roughest seas…”, the word “took on” suggests to take somebody on i.e., to employ or engage somebody.
In July 1976, my wife Mary, son Jonathan, 6, daughter Suzanne, 7, and I set sail from Plymouth, England, to duplicate the round-the-world voyage made 200 years earlier by Captain James Cook. For the longest time, Mary and I—a 37-year-old businessman—had dreamt of sailing in the wake of the famous explorer, and for the past 16 years we had spent all our leisure time honing our seafaring skills in British waters. Our boat Wavewalker, a 23 metre, 30 ton wooden-hulled beauty, had been professionally built, and we had spent months fitting it out and testing it in the roughest weather we could find. (Page 13)
(i) Who had set sail arid from where ?
(ii) What had Captain James Cook done about 200 years back ?
(iii) What had the narrator been doing for the last 16 years during his leisure time ?
(iv) How does the author describe ‘Wavewalker’ ?
(v) Use these words in your own sentences :
(i) The narrator, his wife Mary, his six year old son Jonathan and his seven year old daughter Suzanne had set sail from Plymouth, England.
(ii) Captain James Cook had made the round-the-world voyage by sea about 200 years ago.
(iii) For the past 16 years, the narrator had been polishing his seafaring skills during his leisure time.
(iv) The author describes ‘Wavewalker’ as 23 metre long and 30 ton wodden hulled beauty. It was made professionally.
(a) Columbus is known to be a famous explorer, who discovered America.
(b) The shopkeeper gave me the original bill and retained a duplicate copy with him.
At dawn on January 2, the waves were gigantic. We were sailing with only a small storm jib and were still making eight knots. As the ship rose to the top of each wave we could see endless enormous sea rolling towards us, and the screaming of the wind and spray was painful to the ears. To slow the boat down, we dropped the storm jib and lashed heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stem. Then we double-lashed everything, went through our life-raft drill, attached lifelines, donned oilskins and life jackets—and waited. (Page 14)
(i) What had happened on 2nd January ?
(ii) With what were they sailing ?
(iii) How did they feel about the screaming of the wind ?
(iv) What did they do to slow the boat down ?
(v) Give the opposites of:
(i) The waves were extremely large at dawn on 2 January.
(ii) They were sailing with only a small storm jib.
(iii) They felt that the screaming of the wind was painful to the ears.
(iv) They dropped the storm jib and lashed heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stem.
(v) (a) small
Larry and Herb were pumping like madmen. Broken timbers hung at crazy angles, the whole starboard side bulged inwards; clothes, crockery, charts, tins and toys slashed about in deep water. I half-swam, half-crawled into the children’s cabin. ‘Are you all right ?’ I asked. “Yes,’ they answered from an upper bunk.’ ‘But my head hurts a bit,’ said Sue, pointing to a big bump above her eyes. I had no time to worry about bumped heads. (Page 15)
(i) What happened to the starboard side ?
(ii) What were Larry and Herb doing ?
(iii) How did the narrator reach the children’s cabin ?
(iv) What had happened to Sue ?
(v) Find words in the passage which mean :
(a) the right-hand side of a ship
(b) thump swelling
(i) The whole starboard side had bulged inwards and clothes, crockery, charts, tins and toys etc. fell into the deep water of the sea.
(ii) Larry and Herb were pumping fastly and continuously in a crazy manner.
(iii) The narrator reached the children’s room by half-swimming and half-crawling.
(iv) Sue was hurt and there was a big hump above her eyes.
On January 4, after 36 hours of continuous pumping, they reached the last few cen-timetres of water. Now, we had only to keep pace with the water still coming in. We could not set any sail on the main mast. Pressure on the rigging would simply pull the damaged section of the hull apart, so we hoisted the storm jib and headed for where I thought the two islands were. Mary found some corned beef and cracker biscuits, and we ate our first meal in almost two days. But our respite was short-lived. At 4 p.m. black clouds began building up behind us; within the hour the wind was back to 40 knots and the seas were getting higher. (Page 16)
(i) Where did they reach after 36 hours of continuous pumping ?
(ii) What had they to do with the water which was still coming in ?
(iii) Why could they not set any sail on the main mast ?
(iv) Why was their respite for a short while ?
(v) Use the following words in your own sentences :
(i) They reached the last few centimetres of water in the ship after 36 hours of continuous pumping.
(ii) They had to keep pace with the water which was still coming in.
(iii) They could not do so because the pressure on the rigging would have pulled apart the damaged section of the hull.
(iv) Their respite was for a short while because black clouds began building up behind them.
(a) The Prime Minister hoisted the tricolour on 15th August.
(b) Rigging in search for petrol and gases is going on in Gujarat
That evening, Mary and I sat together holding hands, as the motion of the ship brought more and more water in through the broken planks. We both felt the end was very near. But Wavewalker rode out the storm and by the morning of January 6, with the wind easing, I tried to get a reading on the sextant. Back in the chartroom, I worked on wind speeds, changes of course, drift and current in an effort to calculate our position. The best I could determine was that we were somewhere in 150,000 kilometres of ocean looking for a 65 kilometre-wide island. (Pages 16-17)
(i) What was the result of the motion of the ship ?
(ii) What did the narrator and his wife feel ?
(iii) On what the try to get a reading on the morning of January 6 ?
(iv) What did the narrator come to know about the whereabouts of the ship ?
(v) Find the words from the passage, which mean :
(a) long flat pieces of sawn timber.
(b) an instrument for measuring angular distances.
(i) As a result of the motion of the ship, more and more water entered the ship through broken planks.
(ii) The narrator and his wife felt that their end was approaching near.
(iii) He tried to get a reading on the sextant.
(iv) The narrator came to know that his ship was somewhere in 1,50,000 kilometres of ocean looking for a 65 kilometre-wide island.
About 2 p.m., I went on deck and asked Larry to steer a course of 185 degrees. If we were lucky, I told him with a conviction I did not feel, he could expect to see the island at about 5 p.m. Then with a heavy heart, I went below, climbed on my bunk and amazingly, dozed off. When I woke it was 6 p.m. and growing dark. I knew we must have missed the island, and with the sail we had left, we couldn’t hope to beat back into the westerly winds. At that moment, a tousled head appeared by may bunk. ‘Can I have a hug ?’ Jonathan asked. Sue was right behind him.
‘Why am I getting a hug now?’ I asked.
‘Because you are the best daddy in the whole world and the best captain,’ my son replied.
‘Not today, Jon, I’m afraid.’
‘Why, you must be’ said Sue in a matter-of-fact voice ‘You found the island.’ (Page 17)
(i) What did the narrator ask and tell Larry ?
(ii) What did the narrator do after going below ?
(iii) What did Jonathan ask his daddy ? Why ?
(iv) What did Sue tell her daddy ?
(v) Make noun forms of the following :
(i) The narrator asked Larry to steer a course of 185 degrees. He told Larry that he could expect to see the island at about 5 p.m.
(ii) The narrator dozed off after going below.
(iii) Jonatham asked his daddy if he could have a hug. Jonathan thought that he was the best Daddy and Captain.
(iv) Sue told her daddy that he had found the island.
We’re Not Afraid to Die… If We Can All Be Together Extra Questions Short Answer Type (in about 30-40 words)
Who had set sail and from where ?
The author, his wife Mary, their six-year-old son Jonathan and their seven-year- old daughter Suzanne had started the round-the-world sea voyage by their boat Wavewalker from Plymouth, England in July, 1976
How does the author describe his boat Wavewalker ? How was it fitted and tested ?
The author describes Wavewalker as a 23 metre, 30 ton wooden-hulled beauty. It had been professionally built. They had spent months fitting it out and testing it in the roughest weather they could find.
When and why did the author take the services of two crewmen ?
At Cape Town, before heading east, the author took the services of two crew-men—American Larry Vigil and Swiss Herb Seigler. He did so to help them tackle one of the world’s roughest sea.
What did they do on 25th December ? How was the weather on then 25 ?
On December 25, they were 3500 kilometres east of Cape Town. The weather was still very bad. But they had a wonderful holiday. They celebrated Christmas complete with chrismas tree.
What did they do to slow the boat down on January 2 ?
The waves were gigantic on January 2. So they had to slow down the boat. To do this, they dropped the storm jib and lashed heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stem.
“With horror, I realized that it was not a cloud, but a wave like no other I had ever seen.” What kind of a wave was
What the author thought of as a cloud, turned out to be an extremely extraordinary wave. It appeared perfectly vertical. It was almost twice the height of the other waves, with a “frightful breaking crest.”
What was the outcome of the “tremendous explosion” ?
Due to the extraordinarily high wave, there was a tremendous explosion which shook the deck. A torrent of green and white water broke over the ship. The author’s head smashed into the wheel. He flew overboard and was sinking below the waves.
“I half-swam, half-crawled into the children’s cabin.” What did the author find there ?
After reaching the children’s cabin with a great difficulty, the author asked them whether they were alright. They said yes in reply. But she said that her head hurt a bit, pointing to a big bump over her eyes.
What did the author do after finding that the electric pump had been short circuited ?
The author found out that the electric pump of the ship had been short-circuited. Then he remembered that they had another electric pump under the chartroom floor. He connected it to an out-pipe and it started working.
‘I didn’t want to worry you when you were trying to save us all.’ When and to whom Sue said these words ?
Sue’s head had swollen excessively. She had two enormous black eyes and she showed a deep cut on her arm. When her father said that why she had not told him more about her injuries, she uttered these words.
‘Our only hope was to reach these pinpricks in the vast ocean.’ To what is the author referring to ?
The author checked the charts and calculated that there were two small islands as few hundred kilometres to the east. One of them, lie Amsterdam, was a French scientific base. The author is referring to these islands.
What was the message contained in Sue’s card ?
Sue gave a card to her daddy. It contained a meaningful message. She had written that she loved them (her daddy and mummy) very much. So that card was to say thanks to them and the further had written ‘let’s hope for the best.’
What did the author tell Larry about the island ?
Firstly, the author asked Larry to steer a course of 185 degrees. He told him that if they were lucky, Larry could expect to see the island at about 5 p.m.
How did Sue and the author describe lie Amsterdam ?
Sue described the island lie Amsterdam as : ‘as big as a battleship’. The author described it as a bleak piece of volcanic rock, where there was little vegetation. He called it as the most beautiful island in the world.
We’re Not Afraid to Die… If We Can All Be Together Extra Questions Long Answer Type (in about 100-150 words)
How did the first phase of the author’s sea voyage conclude ? What preparations had they made for their journey ?
The author, his wife Mary, his six-year-old son Jonathan and his seven-year-old daughter Suzanne set sail from Plymouth, England for a round-the-world voyage by sea. They started their long journey in July, 1976 by their boat Wavewalker. It was 23 metres long and its weight was 30 tons.
It had been professionally built. They had spent many months fitting it out and testing it in the roughest weather they could find. They had planned their journey for three years and were supposed to cover 105,000 kilometres.However, the first phase of their journey passed pleasantly as they sailed down the west coast of Africa to Cape Town.
What precautions did the author take to save Wavewalker from the high-rising waves ?
Immediately after starting journey from Cape Town, the author began to encounter strong gales. They blew continuously for the next few weeks. The author was more worried about the size of the waves. Their size was alarming-upto 15 metres. It was as high as their main mast. However at dawn on January 2, the waves were gigantic. They were sailing with only a small storm jib and were still making eight knots.
The ship rose to the top of each wave. The screaming of the wind and spray was painful to the ears. To protect the ship from the high-rising waves, they decided to slow the boat down. For this, they dropped the storm jib and lashed heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stem. Then they double-lashed everything and went through their life-raft drill. Besides it, they attached lifelines, donned oilskins and life-jackets also.
How did the author survive after a tremendous explosion shook the deck ?
An extraordinarily high wave hit Wavewalker. As a result of it a tremendous explosion shook the deck. A torrent of green and white wave broke over the ship. The author’s head smashed into the wheel and he was aware of flying overboard and sinking below the waves. He accepted his approaching death and was losing consciousness. Then unexpectedly, his head popped out of the water.
A few metres away, Wavewalker was near overturning and her masts were almost horizontal. Then a wave hurled her upright. The author grabbed the guard rails and sailed through the air into Wavewalker’s main boom. He survived, but his left ribs had cracked and his mouth was filled with blood and broken teeth.
How did the author find the island lie Amsterdam ?
The author was aware that Wavewalker was in a precarious condition. It would not hold together long enough for them to reach Australia. So, he checked the charts and calculated that there were two small islands a few hundred kilometres to the east. One of them lie Amsterdam, was a French scientific base. His only hope was to reach one of these islands. The author checked and rechecked his calculations.