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I opened my eyes and found myself lying on white hospital sheets that stank of antiseptics. The pain was sore, punching on my right leg after the surgery. I could barely move my head as it was heavy with anesthesia and painkillers. Somehow, at a distance, I spotted my new boyfriend, Crutch. Crutch and I would be dating each other for the next two months His gleaming brown, woody exterior wasn't attractive, while the blue rubbery cap on his head made me feel imprisoned. The silvery screws that attached two lengths of his wood seemed to be tightly 'screwed' and strong, reassuring me of his strengths. I heaved a deep sigh and for two seconds, considered exactly how lucky I was to be with Crutch.

It took me another week to get properly used to Crutch. He was sturdy, well-built and hardly ever left my side. He gave me a false sensation of walking, a comforting sensation of support and an ever-wanting sensation of seeking freedom. Most importantly, he gave me a realization about the true gifts of God and how it felt to be without it. Thankfully, I finally dumped Crutch on a dark, moonless July night after two months of depressing dependence. I could freely walk again, that gave me a reassuring feeling of being 'normal' and a tickling sensation of happiness and independence.

Although it's been a year since I left Crutch, the itchy pain that cripples me on cold, rainy nights reminds me of him and his 'teachings'. The post-surgery black scar on my right leg constantly reminds of my weaknesses and incapability. The bone, drilled as deep as the marrow to remove complications will never be healed enough for me to apply pressure on it. The damn bone is too sensitive and might crack, so I couldn't risk losing it for good. I can never run, never jump on two feet or play football on muddy fields. Heck, I can't even drive as it requires pressing down on the accelerator with the right foot. If I ever get chased by a mad dog or need to run away from a potential bomb explosion, that's pretty much the same as committing suicide for me. It feels worse when all of these come from a former basketball player, a jumpy hyper teen and a kickass ass-kicker.

It's strange how it took a woody Crutch to teach me one of the finest lessons of life. For the first time, it properly got through me that every organ, every bone and every limb of the human body had an important purpose. Having eyes to see wasn't simply sight-seeing; it was the amazing feeling of witnessing the wonders of nature and life. It was being able to watch the rain drops trickle down green leaves or seeing the people I love every day. Without the nerves at the tip of my fingers, I wouldn't have known heat or cold and felt how soft a baby's skin could be. The ears gave me the power to hear everyone's voices and listen to the rumbling noise of the clouds. I could stretch my hands and pick up any object; I could stick my tongue out to taste the mouth-watering delights from Mum's kitchen.

We don't realize it often, but every complete bit about us makes us exceptionally lucky every day. Imagine a life without your feet to walk, or eyes to see or a painful hole inside your heart that makes it too weak to properly feel it. We take these little things about us for granted, and never realize what it's like to even make the smallest compromise on any of these. The only time we do get it is when we lose it. It is only then the true gifts of life strikes us and that 1% of our brain figures out how freaking good our life was with everything in it. Only then, we learn to appreciate the true gift of God.

By Sabhanaz Rashid Diya

The answers to the questions

Why am I so unlucky?" "Why do I love her so much?" "Does he really like me?" "How will I get rid of the pimples?" "How will I look in this black T-Shirt?" We ask hundreds of questions each and every single day. Sometimes to ourselves and sometimes to God. We know very well that there are no answers for us, but still who cares? But the good news is that the days when we asked questions to ourselves have finally come to an end! The everlasting barrier between questions and answers has been lifted. No I am not talking about KBC hosted by King Khan. I am talking about Yahoo Answers!

Now most of you reading this article might be saying, "We already know, dummy!" Because you might have joined it already. But for those of you who don't know, Yahoo Answers is a not-so-new section that Yahoo has started. Anyone who has a Yahoo ID can join answers and ask question, answer them, discover new things, rate the answers and do all type of mad things. Members can update their profile and use their pictures or Avatars and use real or fancy names. When you first join Answers, you will be awarded 100points. And for each question you answer, you will get 2points. If the person who asked the question likes your answer, then he can choose it as the best answer and award you an adittional 10points(he's not that generous, because he'll get 3points for selecting a best answer!Why are people always thinking about themselves?). You can also rate answers and will get 1point for every answer. But here's the catch, each question you ask will cost you 10points(that is 1question asked = 5questions answered). You will be promoted to higher levels for crossing certain point barriers. And as you rise higher up the levels, you'll get prizes(I haven't got a single one, but what's the harm in trying. Persistence is virtue... remember the RS slogan?). So if you want to see your name in the Leading Sore Board, you will naturally have to answer more and keep your big mouth shut! You have got to be dumb if you don't get it!

Once inside the world of answers, you will find out that there are weirdos who are a lot weirder than you. People's imagination can drive them crazy..... this can be appropriate to describe these chaps!! The questions are organized into different catagories, such as Holidays, Antiques, Arts, Books, Philosophy, Friends and Family, Culture, Regions, Languages, Mythology, Religion, Astrology and the list goes on and on and on, maybe I should stop now. There are also some sections that you can check out just for recreation or fun such as Hobbies, Romance, Music, Jokes, Movies, Celebrities and even Flirting!!Ahem, Supervision by parents is essential! Why once I came across on one of the most stupidiest question of the millenium! One of the user with pea-sized brain once asked, "Is the sun afraid of darkness? Then why doesn't it give us light during the night-time?"But if you are lucky enough, you might also come across questions asked by celebs like Stephen Hawkins!!

So if you have a head buzzing with questions or if you think you can help others by sharing your knowledge, wisdom and experience, then Yahoo Answers(answer.yahoo.co) is the place for you. After writing all these, I have only one question in my head. "Will the RS desk like it?" I don't think Yahoo Answers have the answer to this question!

By Redwan I. Orittro

Book Review
The celestine prophecy

Leanor Roosevelt once said “Many people walk in and out of your life; only true friends leave footprints in your heart.” The same could be said of books. A person may read hundreds of books in a lifetime, and truly remember only a few. Every once in a while, a story comes along that grabs your imagination and makes you rethink your outlook on life. We saw Jonathan Livingston Seagull in 1970, and then we saw The Alchemist, which was first published in Portuguese, in Brazil in 1988. Both of which sparked the imagination of readers around the world.

1993, the same year that The Alchemist was published in English, another novel was released, which shot to the best-selling list. This was James Redfield's The Celestine Prophecy.

Categorised as 'religious fiction', it may not seem like a very promising read until you get into the story, and like The Da Vinci Code it blows your mind.

The story revolves around a man called John Woodson, who runs into a former girlfriend, who tells him about an ancient manuscript that has been discovered in the forests of Peru, which contains nine key insights into life. Seized by an inexplicable urge to find out more, he catches the very next plane to Peru to find out more. And thus begins an incredible adventure, which leads him on a dangerous chase to uncover the nine insights before powerful forces opposing them manage to extinguish them forever.

The insights described in the book touch on subjects like spirituality, religion, relationships and link these with such diverse issues like communication strategies, diet, and particle physics (no kidding!) Redfield, a sociologist, manages to unify theories put forward by several eminent social scientists, and shows how the basic tenets of almost all religions are the same. You discover each insight with Woodson, and you have to stop and think about them before moving on; he's that compelling.

While the theories and facts are fascinating and will keep you hooked till the very end, the story itself is a little badly-paced, and the character development leaves much to be desired. The relationships progress at the speed of a Himesh Reshammiya movie (you know what I'm talking about now).

Nevertheless, for that mind-boggling read that will make you re-evaluate the way you communicate your life, or even view your faith with new respect, you want to read The Celestine Prophecy.

By Sabrina F Ahmad


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