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    #1

    On the run, part four

    Would you please take a look at the fourth part of my short story and correct my mistakes.

    I went into the small musty train station and flinched as I saw Tito scowling at me sternly from the photograph on the wall. “How dare you to leave me?” I heard his grave voice in my head. “You’ve promised to follow my path and sacrifice your life for me, and now you’re running away like a rat.”
    At the ticket office behind the grill, sat a middle-aged, bald-headed man with a pen behind his left ear. “One way to Stuttgart,” I said. He nodded, turned to the black contraption to his right and pressed some buttons, which made banging noise before two thick brown cards came out. He took my money, counted it, stapled the tickets together and with the change put them on the tray in front of me. I thanked him and took a seat on a wooden bench in a murky waiting room. There were just few passengers; mostly men whose weather-beaten faces made them look older than their years. They smoked, drank slivovitz and talked aloud about the latest events in their village. Listening to their thick, intoxicated voices, I felt a pity for them. They lived in two different worlds, one abroad, thousands of kilometres from their homes and another in their village to which they would return a few times a year. They sacrificed everything for their families and worked day and night to save enough money to fulfil their dreams. Slovenia, Austria and Germany sapped their energy, used their bodies and strength and in return gave them money for which they built houses, bought cars, tractors, TVs and other gadgets, and even help their extended families.

    Their loud voices and smoke that floated in the waiting room made me nervous, and I took my suitcase and went outside. A policeman and a railway worker stood discussing football matches. A young couple tenderly kissed each other as if they were the only people in the world. A pair of parents accompanied a woman in her twenties with a beret and a large suitcase, probably a student on her way to Zagreb in Croatia. A group of young men and women sat on the bench and sang a popular rock song accompanied by the guitar. A tootles old man in a black fedora and black winter coat sat on the bench next to theirs and with his cane tapped the ground to the rhythm of the music.
    The electric locomotive whistled twice before the train came to a halt. I was relieved to see it was not crowded. Usually, the trains on this line were brimming with passengers, and you could spend hours standing in a narrow corridor before you got a chance to get a seat. I opened the door of a compartment with four men in it, and they welcomed me warmly. They asked me to where I was travelling. They also wanted to know what I was going to do in Stuttgart. When I replied I wanted to visit my uncle, they wanted to know what his occupation was. I told them he was a mechanic. That seemed to have satisfied their curiosity, and they did not ask me any more questions about my trip. I asked them where they were going and they told me two of them were heading for Salzburg in Austria, and another two for Munich in Germany. I was relieved that none of them was travelling to my destination. The last person I needed was a curious yokel who would follow me through the city.

    I had a great time with my fellow passengers. They cracked jokes and related stories about their experiences as Gastarbeiters (the word coined by the German government in the 60’, meaning guest workers). I was an attentive listener and they were eager to share with me their recollections. The train rolled through the evening while I had lessons about what it meant to be an immigrant. Until now, I knew almost nothing about Gastarbeiters and their lives. I saw them coming back on holiday to visit their families in their large expensive cars. I had never spoken to them before and could not imagine what kind of life they lived in foreign countries, which planned to use their healthy bodies, and then, when they became weak and useless, send them back as discarded goods. The longer I listened to my fellow travellers the more respect I had for them, their resilience, determination and resourcefulness.
    TO BE CONTINUED

  1. Eckaslike's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: On the run, part four

    Hello Bassim,

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    I went into the small musty train station and flinched as I saw Tito scowling at me sternly from the photograph on the wall. “How dare you to leave me?” I heard his grave voice in my head. “You’ve promised to follow my path and sacrifice your life for me, and now you’re running away like a rat.”

    At the ticket office behind the grill, sat a middle-aged, bald-headed man with a pen behind his left ear. “One way to Stuttgart,” I said. He nodded, turned to the black contraption to his right and pressed some buttons, which made a banging noise before two thick brown cards came out. He took my money, counted it, stapled the tickets together and with the change put them on the tray in front of me. I thanked him and took a seat on a wooden bench in a murky waiting room. There were just only a few passengers; mostly men whose weather-beaten faces made them look older than their years. They smoked, drank slivovitz and talked aloud about the latest events in their village. Listening to their thick, intoxicated voices, I felt a pity for them. They lived in two different worlds, one abroad, thousands of kilometres from their homes and another in their village to which they would return a few times a year. They sacrificed everything for their families and worked day and night to save enough money to fulfil their dreams. Slovenia, Austria and Germany sapped their energy, used their bodies and strength and in return gave them money for with which they built houses, bought cars, tractors, TVs and other gadgets, and even helped their extended families.

    Their loud voices and cigarette smoke that floated in the waiting room made me nervous, and so I took my suitcase and went outside. A policeman and a railway worker stood discussing football s matches. while nearby a A young couple tenderly kissed each other as if they were the only people in the world. A pair of parents accompanied a woman in her twenties, with a beret and a large suitcase, who was probably a student on her way to Zagreb in Croatia. A group of young men and women sat were sitting on the a bench and sang singing a popular rock song accompanied by the guitar. as A a tootles[?] old man in a black fedora and black winter coat sat on the bench next to theirs tapping and with his cane tapped on the ground to the rhythm of the music.

    The electric locomotive whistled twice before the train came to a halt. I was relieved to see it was not crowded. Usually, the trains on this line were brimming with passengers, and you could spend hours standing in a narrow corridor before you got a chance to get a seat. I opened the door of a compartment with four men in it, and they welcomed me warmly. They asked me to where I was travelling. They also wanted to know what I was going to do in Stuttgart. When I replied I wanted to visit my uncle, they wanted to know what his occupation was. I told them he was a mechanic. That seemed to have satisfied satisfy their curiosity, and they did not ask me any more questions about my trip. I asked them where they were going and they told me two of them were heading for Salzburg in Austria, and another two for Munich in Germany. I was relieved that none of them was travelling to my destination. The last person thing I needed was a curious yokel who would follow me through the city.

    I had a great time with my fellow passengers. They cracked jokes and related stories about their experiences as Gastarbeiters (the word coined by the German government in the 1960’s, meaning "guest workers"). I was an attentive listener and they were eager to share with me their recollections with me. The train rolled on through the evening while I had lessons about what it meant to be an immigrant. Until now, I knew almost nothing about Gastarbeiters and their lives. I saw them coming back on holiday to visit their families in their large expensive cars. I had never spoken to them before and could not imagine what kind of life they lived in foreign countries, which planned to use their healthy bodies, and then, when they became weak and useless, send them back as discarded goods. The longer I listened to my fellow travellers the more respect I had for them, their resilience, determination and resourcefulness.
    TO BE CONTINUED
    As you can see, again, the vast majority of what you have written works well.

    I feel there is an issue, with the third paragraph, which purely revolves around starting each sentence with "A". You might have six sentences in a paragraph which are perfectly correct, but when each starts in the same way the reader can either become irritated by it, or lose interest. Sometimes this can be solved by restructuring, rephrasing or, by editing and joining sentences together. I have tried the last of these methods, to keep the writing as close to your original as possible.

    "A tootles old man": I have no idea what "tootles" means in this context. Is it a typo? If you explain what you mean by this I may be able to come up with a suitable English word for you. I know "tootle" means to either casually make noises using a trumpet or similar instrument, or to travel in a leisurely fashion, so for example "he tootles along in his car", but I have no idea how that can work in the given scenario.
    Last edited by Eckaslike; 12-Sep-2015 at 20:49.

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    #3

    Re: On the run, part four

    Eckaslike,

    Thank you again. I appreciate you help so much. First now, when you have pointed out at so many "A" in my sentences, I noticed how irritated it could be. Regarding "tootless" I actually wanted to write "teethless" or "without teeth". Is it correct to write "a teethless old man"?

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    #4

    Re: On the run, part four

    Ha, ha, ha!

    The answer is so obvious now you have told me!

    The word you need is "toothless", so it would be "a toothless old man". So "tootles" was really very close and staring me in the face.

    Thanks for your thanks. I find your writing very interesting and readable.

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