Sunday, 14 January 2018

Post 6: Waste of Time.

This book was a complete nuisance. 
    If you’re willing to tolerate people who judge and only care for themselves, then I would recommend the novel. For me personally, the main character bothered me so much it made me mad to have to read it. Alexandria always ends up objectifying or categorizing people she hardly even knows. I had high hopes for this character to improve and maybe it’d be a better read in the end but really she didn’t change much until the last chapter. 
    Though it is hard for me to think good about this book the author did write it very well, meaning I would be willing to read some of his other, better-reviewed, books. If he was able to create a character that put me through so much anger and frustration, he must be pretty talented. I wish that he hadn’t have kept the character like this the entire novel, he could’ve toned it down or maybe could have created a side character like this inside of the main. 
    Not only was this book an inconvenience to read, I don’t think it fits the category of World Issues either. This project was meant for us to choose a book that interested us out of a wide selection of different novels written around world issues. Yes, this novel is roughly about poverty but it is not very clear. I should now be considered an expert on this novel and I still sometimes am unsure the main focus going on and how to describe it exactly. 

I’ve never liked books from the start and this one definitely tested my limits, but regardless finished it and I am slowly learning to tolerate reading.

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Post 5: Closet For A Princess.

        Alexandria is a very spoiled young lady. She knows what she wants and nothing is stopping her from getting it. She is very particular about the things she wears. Alexandria mentions on page 125 her favorite stores, specifically saying “Prada, Gucci, and Fendi, all the best stores”. Since these three brands are the only ones she mentions and seems to be her favorite keeping it safe with mostly including these brands in her closet won’t cause me to get a bad reaction if she were to ever look inside and approve. Other clothes in her closet including ivory blouses and green safari shorts is an outfit she spoke about wearing on page 78 (“Personally I thought my choice of clothing was a dozen notches above this crowd. I had on an ivory-colored silk blouse and forest-green safari shorts”). Her favorite colors are taupe or aquamarine as she mentions on page 66 so I thought her closet deserved some of those colors as well. An intentional choice I made while designing her closet was making sure colors that shouldn’t be included. “Oh god! I look awful in orange! Everybody looks awful in orange” Alexandria says on page 6. When she arrives at the airport in Africa on page 45 she spots her huge pink suitcases, and on the last chapter, she tells her parents how she left all but one suitcase behind for the children of Africa. This is why there is only one suitcase in her closet. A full length in the center of the room for her to see her whole outfit because she thinks it is crazy if someone doesn’t have one (page 47 and 48”. A princess like Alexandria, of course, needs a shelf designated for her shoes, she doesn’t specifically talk about her shoes often so I added some that were definitely appropriate to her personality. From page 75 I know that she always needs her hair to be beautiful and continually touches it up with her straightening iron. An aquamarine straightener plugged into the wall would be a definite feature in her closet.  Hopefully if Alex were to ever take a look in the closet I designed her, she doesn't be too harsh on me! 

Alexandria's closet I drew. 

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Post 4: Ruth's Thoughts.

We were going as fast as we could. The wheelbarrow was bouncing mother around on our travel on the bumpy road from the village to the volunteer's campsite. Once we arrived I rang the doorbell many times, trying to get their attention to come to the door but nobody came even after the third ring. Finally the askari came and I requested for help. One walked away and soon came back with Alexandria, my best friend. Alex ran to mother in the wheelbarrow and noticed how she wasn’t doing well. Mother was limp and unmoving, this is her 13th child. Father and the askari started fighting but I wasn’t listening, I was holding mothers hands while my younger siblings started to sob. 
Suddenly, Alexandria screamed “Everybody stop!”, I think she wanted to help. She was begging to father wondering what was going on and he soonly started speaking, very quickly, in Swahili. I knew Alex isn’t fluent so father started talking to me so I could translate for her. I hesitantly explained how mother and the baby weren’t doing so well and we need help because the baby can’t come out. The other volunteers were gone, and wouldn’t be back for hours, I started to worry. I shouted out there was no time to wait and we needed to get to the clinic. My mother and the baby are going to die if we don’t get help fast. Alexandria didn’t know what to do, but I reminded her of the car and that she needs to be driven to get there in time. She quickly grabbed the keys, opened the back and laid a blanket down for mother to lay on. Right when father was going to wheel mother over the askari blocked him! They started to argue about how they weren’t allowed to let the car go because they didn’t have permission, my siblings and I are very scared. Alexandria then jumped in and started to give the askari orders that I didn’t quite understand. She then turned to me and asked for a word in Swahili for terminated so I shouted out Itakufa. She then asked me a word for fire, I don’t know what she's trying to get across to them using the words kill and fire but I said Moto anyways. 
Oh no, Alexandria just told the askari that if they don’t move she will kill them with fire, maybe she got some of her words confused. They soon moved out of our way and we rushed to put mother in the car. Alexandria told me that she could watch my little brothers and sisters while they were gone but  I begged her to take us to the clinic as she is the only one who could drive.
Bump after bump, road after road, mother was still screaming in pain and we still haven't arrived at the clinic. It was getting worse, her pain was increasing. I couldn’t stand watching her like this any longer, we needed to get there faster before mother dies before she gets help. 
As we finally arrived Alexandria and I rushed to the back to gently, but quickly help mother out of the car while father was talking to the nurse. I overhear the conversation, she is not a patient and they can’t help us so they’re trying to send us even further down the road? Alexandria once again fought for my mother and my family. I really appreciate this, without her my mother and baby brother/sister wouldn’t make it. 
“The baby is turned and they both cannot be saved without a doctor cutting her open”, said the nurse. My heart sank, I didn’t think there was anything we could do, no one in this village could afford surgically removing a baby. Although, right then, Alexandria pulls out money, lots of money. I’ve never seen so much money before but I didn’t care to be thinking about that, all I could think to care was that my mother is going to be okay. 

The car Alexandria took us to the clinic in. 

Post 3: Diverse Priorities.

Sometimes you think you have a little more than what you actually do. 
 Here, we have things like Legal Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Alexandria somehow ends up taking these rights too far and using them like they will always work or help her in all situations. In chapters 1 and 2 Alexandria is in court for her thoughts and actions while shoplifting and breaking her probation. Legal Rights means you have a fair trial and you are always innocent until you’re proven guilty. Although you would think these rights are helping Alexandria, they are somehow still going against her. She tries to use these things against the judge and strongly believes that her possibility of spending a year in juvenile detention is completely unfair. Unfortunately for her, the judge has all the proof he needs that this possibility is what all of her crimes and mistakes add up to. 
To people who are more fortunate and live it a stable country, their day to day worries are different than ones in places like Africa. For example, in most households in North America families are making sure their children get to their activities and education on time or having their pantry full of food. While in Africa, everyone is getting as much water as they can while the sun is still up and getting through sicknesses without having a doctor by their side. This shows you how diverse different countries priorities are when they have different rights shaping their home. 

Post 2: Selfish and Spoiled.

Anger and frustration is the main emotion that keeps coming back to me. 
As I have mentioned in a previous post-Alexandria Hyatt is a spoiled girl who only cares about herself. In chapter 9, Alexandria's guide asks all the volunteers to one by one introduce themselves to Alexandria and talk a little bit about why they are in Africa. One girl named Sarah specifically mentions how her and her youth group are here to help because Africa doesn’t have fresh water or schools to go to (pg 67). There are some moments when Alexandria made some comments that could potentially offend someone who strongly cares about the things citizens in Africa don’t have. 

When it was time for her to have a shower she was talking to Renée, her guide, about hot showers. Renée then has to explain to her how there is not enough hot water for everyone as it is not a direct source and she can’t use it up. Alexandria doesn’t seem to care but only seems to worry about is if she gets the hot water or not. Things like this frustrate me because she doesn’t notice all she cares about is herself and she doesn’t care about hurting anyone's feelings because she has more than them. In the future, I am very hopeful that Alexandria learns to understand the position different people are in when in different places or not and to learn to help instead of brag. Although this does make me a little angry now, I believe Alexandria will learn to change for the best amd become a better person. 

Example of how people in Africa get their water.

Friday, 15 December 2017

Post 1: Annoying Teen?

The average selfish teenage girl. 
Alexandria Hyatt is a 15, almost 16-year-old girl who was caught shoplifting and was sent to court. There are some other things in her past that didn’t help her in this case including breaking her probation and smashing a window. After she negotiated out of going to juvenile detention for about a year, she compromised with going to Africa to volunteer for a charity. 
Alexandria’s parents are divorced and her dad has a good job leading to her being spoiled and assuming she gets what she wants all the time. The main thing I have noticed about this character so far is how she treats other people. There have been many times where she was judging someone from afar or treating someone like they are a dog or her servant. 

On page 38 she was on the plane heading to Paris for her layover to get to Africa, she saw a woman and she pointed out saying “she was wearing a wedding band and a tiny, tiny engagement ring. Obviously she hadn’t married for money.”  This is an example of one of the times she was judging someone for practically nothing. I am hoping that in the future Alexandria will learn how she treats others and realize what's she's saying.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017


Over 7,000 miles from home, with no hot water, no cell phone reception, no friends or family. Alexandria of Africa is a story about a girl who got arrested and was forced to move to Kenya to work for an international charity for a month.
I have never heard of this novel before but as I was carefully looking for the best book for me this drew me in. Most of the books we were given were about people adapting to our country but this one is about how Alexandria is adapting to Kenya, Africa.
I am looking forward to learning about the struggles she faces, how she gets past them and experiencing her feelings along the way.

Time Line and Scheduling