Stranded in an Island
This passage is about how the writer was stranded in an island following a shipwreck.
- It had been days since I was stranded on the island. I had lost track of time completely. My only companion was a cat that had survived the shipwreck. When I was first washed up on the shore, I found it hard to believe that I was still alive. Memories of the vicious and destructive storm still haunted me.
- The grandeur of the ship had given all of us a false sense of security. As the first signs of the storm started, our captain dismissed it initially. “It’s nothing much; just another storm,” he reassured. However, it was a powerful storm that battered the solidly-built ship badly and large holes were made on the side of the ship’s hull. The freezing water started rushing in. Within an hour, our ship was consumed by the dark, inky waters.
- My train of thought was disrupted by Philly licking my hand affectionately. I had named the animal ‘Philly’ in memory of one of the new friends I made on the cruise. I asked Philly whether she was hungry. She meowed enthusiastically.
- I could not remember when my last meal was. Probably it was a ten-course dinner on the ship. Since I had never fished before, I thought that maybe I could try something simpler, like picking fruits. Besides, the thought of entering the freezing cold water made fishing out of the question. With Philly at my side, armed with a sharp branch, we ventured into the forest on the island.
- Suddenly, I thought I heard noises. Hope leapt within me. “Hello?” I called out, my voice shaking. There was no response. I stared blankly at the thick, green vegetation around me. It was mysterious and secretive, and I feared, did not welcome outsiders.
- As we resumed looking for fruit trees, we chanced upon one which bore yellow, juicy-looking fruits. Suddenly a dark-skinned woman appeared out of nowhere, holding a sharp spear, dressed in fur and grass. I instinctively backed away from her. Then I saw that she was trying to help us. Pointing her spear at the fruit tree, she shook her head vigorously. I nodded at her to show that I understood what she was saying.
- Beckoning to us to follow her, she turned to walk along a small path that I had not noticed. The path zig-zagged along for a while, and the woman walked at great speed, with myself and Philly trying to keep pace. At the end of the small path, there was a small village. Tears of joy and relief filled my eyes.
Answer the following questions
From paragraph 1
- What do you think happened to the ship? (1)
- Which of the following words has the nearest meaning to the word ‘vicious’ in this paragraph? (1)
From paragraph 2
- Quote the phrase of four words that tells us that the ship’s passengers were deceived by the grandeur of the ship. (1)
- Which single word in this paragraph tells us that the captain of the ship did not take the storm seriously? (1)
- How do we know that the storm was powerful? (2)
From paragraph 3
- Which of the following words have the nearest meaning to the word ‘disrupted’ as it is used in this paragraph? (1)
- Who was Philly named after? (1)
From paragraph 4
- Explain fully why the writer decided to pick fruits to eat when he was hungry, instead of fishing? (2)
From paragraph 5
- “Hope leapt within me.” Why? Explain fully. (2)
- What emotion did the writer feel about the thick, green vegetation around him, and why? (2)
From paragraph 6
- Which two consecutive words from this paragraph tells us that the author found the fruit tree bearing yellow, juicy-looking fruits accidentally? (1)
- What did the author do when he saw the woman? Answer in your own words.(2)
- What do you think the woman was trying to tell the author? (1)
From paragraph 7
- Why did the writer cry at the end of the story? (2)
Marking Scheme (Answers)
- The ship was destroyed in a powerful storm/ The ship sank in a storm/ The ship was wrecked.
- a) cruel
- False sense of security
- The storm battered the solidly-built ship badly (1) and large holes were made on the side of the ship’s hull (1).
- a) Interrupted
- Philly was named after a friend the author had made in the ship.
- The author had never fished before (1), and the water was freezing cold. (1)
- The author heard noises (1) and he thought that they may be some people living on the island (1).
- The author felt fear (1), because he thought the vegetation did not welcome outsiders (1).
- Chanced upon
- The author moved away (1) without thinking about it/ automatically/intuitively (1)
- I think the woman was saying that the fruits were poisonous/ not edible
- The author felt joy (1) and relief (1).