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  1. VIP Member
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    #1

    Freedom, part nine

    Would you please correct the mistakes in the ninth part of my text?

    One day Kemal and I went to a shopping mall outside the town. We walked first through the woods on a winding trail and than about one hour along the busy road under the scorching sun. I could not remember I walked so long ever before and I sweated profusely, while Kemal did not sweat at all and was light on his feet. When we finally arrived there, in front of us loomed a large rectangle building covered in bright neon signs and companies’ logos. Hundreds of cars were parked in the car park. Some people were unloading their shopping into the back of their cars. Their faces were blank or stern. I believed that shopping had not made them happy; on the contrary, it exhausted them both mentally and physically.

    The cool air inside the mall made me feel better. It smelled of perfumes and body care products from the beauty shop. I breathed deeply, filling my lungs with its coolness while my eyes soaked the doll-like shop assistants, who were perfectly made-up. My sweating stopped and I relaxed. Soft music played from the invisible speakers, interspersed with announcement spoken in a pleasant voice. I could not believe that just a few weeks before I stood in a long queue for the Red Cross aid in my hometown and was overjoyed if I got a few tins of sardines or a package of spaghetti more than the last time.
    This mall was the epitome of capitalism. It turned into a shrine to which people of all ages and social classes went on pilgrimage in their thousands. I had visited department stores in Zagreb, Sarajevo and Belgrade before the war, and they all were large and well-stocked, but they dwarfed in comparison to this behemoth.

    I became dizzy of so many impressions. The mall was like an octopus which had embraced me with its tentacles and would not let me go until I spent my money. Shops lined both sides of the long marbled hall: chocolate, tea, coffee, patisserie, jewellery, toys, electronics, music, clothes, shoes shops etc. Escalators carried shoppers up to the first and second floor where more shops offered their wares. People patiently queued everywhere, as if waiting was part of gratification. Spoiled children dragged their parents to their favourite shops, and if the parents resisted, they screamed and stomped. Teenagers sat on a bench drinking Coke out of the oversized paper cups, commenting on the passersby. On another bench sat a group of fat middle-aged unshaven men. They wore faded t-shirts, dirty tracksuit bottoms and torn trousers. They talked over each other in their hoarse voices and were watched by a security guard who seemed to be waiting for the first opportunity to throw them out. A bored-looking pensioner sat behind a camping table, selling raffles. A woman with straight blond hair was demonstrating a kitchen machine. She was talking into a microphone and at the same time pressing buttons with her slender fingers, which caused the machine to run at different speeds. I could not take my eyes off her and did not pay attention to the appliance at all.

    “I’d like to marry her right now,” Kemal quipped.
    “Me too,” I said.
    Kemal had promised me to show me a lake near the refugee centre, and I used this opportunity to buy a pair of swimming trunks, and a shaving kit. Then we treated ourselves with ice cream and sat on a bench, watching shoppers passing by. They pushed their laden trolleys and brushed against others people likewise overloaded with their purchase. Others lugged their oversized shopping bags, their eyes focused on the exit door. I wondered how long their satisfaction would last after they finally came home, take all the items out and start using them. Probably after a month or two, an expensive shirt and a hand-made pair of shoes would lose their gloss, and the customer would hurry to the shrine to experience the thrill again even if it would be for a short time.

    The only group of people who seemed not to be affected by all the hustle and bustle were some pensioners who shuffled around with the hands behind their backs. They looked at a shop window for a few seconds then moved to another one and the next until they came to the end and then went over to the other side and did the same until a new demonstration drew their attention. For them the mall was like a landscape through which they could stroll freely, kill time and walk out without spending anything. A half a century ago, they would have gone to a market and haggle with farmers over the price of flour, spinach and poultry, and they would worry how to feed and keep warm their families. Today as a result of the generosity of the welfare state, these pensioners lacked almost nothing. They main problem was boredom and loneliness, which they were afraid of more than any illness.

    As I was watching my fellow humans struggling with their bags and packages, I wondered if in a few years’ time I would be one of them. I imagined myself wheeling a trolley overflowing with merchandise. Next to me, on my left, my two kids pulled at my sleeve, “Daddy, please buy us more sweets!” they screamed. On my right, marched my plump Swedish wife, sour and angry because I did not want to buy a new carpet for our living room. “My mother was right,” she shouted, “I should never have married a foreigner. You Balkan people are barbarians.”
    The scene was just a figment of my imagination, but it gave me shivers. Hakim’s warning about materialism rang in my mind. Most people around me behaved like possessed. As they grabbed items from the shelves and clothes racks and put them in their trolleys, their eyes sparkled. They probably experienced an orgasm-like feeling, which urged them to buy more and more. The thrill they were getting out of buying turned them into addicts. I promised myself never to be like them.
    TO BE CONTINUED

  2. teechar's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Freedom, part nine

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    One day, Kemal and I went to a shopping mall outside the town. We first walked first through the woods on a winding trail and then for about one hour along the busy road under the scorching sun. I could not remember walking ed so long ever before, and I sweated profusely, while Kemal did not sweat at all and was light on his feet. When we finally arrived there, in front of us loomed a large rectangle building covered in with many bright neon signs and company ies’ logos. Hundreds of cars were parked in the car park. Some people were unloading putting their shopping into the back boots (trunks AmE) of their cars. Their faces were looked blank or frigid. stern. I believed that shopping had not made them happy; on the contrary, it exhausted them both mentally and physically.

    The cool air inside the mall made me feel better. It smelled of perfumes and body-care products from the beauty shop. I breathed in deeply, filling my lungs with its coolness while my eyes soaked ogled the doll-like shop assistants, who were perfectly made up. My sweating stopped and I relaxed. Soft music played from the invisible speakers, interspersed with announcements spoken in a pleasant voice. I could not believe that just a few weeks before, I had stood in a long queue for the Red Cross aid in my hometown and was overjoyed if I got a few tins of sardines or a package packet of spaghetti more than the last time [I don't understand that].

    This That mall was the epitome of capitalism. It turned into was like a shrine to which people of all ages and social classes went on pilgrimage in their thousands. I had visited department stores [Note that a department store is not the same as a shopping mall.] in Zagreb, Sarajevo and Belgrade before the war, and they all were large and well-stocked, but they were dwarfed in comparison to by this behemoth.

    I walked around it and became dizzy trying to take it all in. of so many impressions. The mall was like an octopus which had embraced seized me with its tentacles and would not let me go until I had spent all my money. Shops lined both sides of the long marbled hall: they sold everything including chocolate, tea, coffee, patisserie, pastries, jewellery, toys, electronics, music, clothes, shoes, shops, etc. Escalators carried shoppers up to the first and second floors where more shops offered their wares. People patiently queued everywhere, as if waiting was part of entailed gratification. Spoiled children dragged their parents to their favourite shops, and if the parents resisted, they screamed and stomped. Teenagers sat on a bench drinking Coke out of the oversized paper cups, commenting on the passersby. On another bench, sat a group of fat middle-aged unshaven men. They wore faded t-shirts, dirty tracksuit bottoms and torn trousers. They talked over each other in their hoarse voices and were watched by a security guard who seemed to be waiting for the first opportunity to throw them out. A bored-looking pensioner sat behind a camping table, selling raffle tickets. A woman with straight blond hair was demonstrating the wonders of a kitchen appliance. machine. She was talking into a microphone and at the same time pressing buttons with her slender fingers, which caused the machine to run at different speeds. I could not take my eyes off her and did not pay attention to the appliance at all.

    “I’d like to marry her right now,” Kemal quipped.
    “Me too,” I said.
    Kemal had promised me to show me a lake near the refugee centre, [What's the logical connection here?] and I used this opportunity to buy a pair of swimming trunks and a shaving kit. Then we treated ourselves with to ice cream and sat on a bench, watching shoppers passing by. They pushed their laden trolleys and brushed against other people also carrying plenty of shopping bags. likewise overloaded with their purchase. Others lugged their oversized shopping bags, their eyes focused on the exit door. I wondered how long their satisfaction would last after they finally came got home, take took all the items out and start using them. Probably after a month or two, an that expensive shirt and or hand-made pair of shoes would lose their gloss, and the customer would feel compelled to hurry back to the shrine to experience the thrill again even if it would be for a short time.

    The only group of people who seemed not to be affected by all the hustle and bustle were some pensioners who shuffled around with their hands behind their backs. They looked at a shop window for a few seconds, then moved to another one and the next until they came to the end and then went over to the other side and did the same. until a new demonstration drew their attention. For them, the mall was like a landscape through which they could stroll freely, kill time and walk out without spending anything. A half a century ago, they would have gone to a market and haggled with farmers over the price of flour, spinach and poultry, and they would have worried about how to feed and keep warm their families. Today as a result of the generosity of the welfare state, these pensioners lacked almost nothing. They Their main problems was were boredom and loneliness, which they were afraid of more than any illness.

    As I was watching my fellow humans struggling with their bags and packages, I wondered if in a few years’ time I would be one of them. I imagined myself wheeling a trolley overflowing with merchandise, . Next to me, on my left, with my two kids, to the left, pulling ed at my sleeve and screaming, “Daddy, please buy us more sweets!” they screamed. On my right, marched my plump Swedish wife, sour and angry because I did not want to buy a new carpet for our living room, saying, “My mother was right. ” she shouted, “ I should never have married a foreigner. You Balkan people are barbarians.”

    The scene was just a figment of my imagination, but it gave me the shivers. Hakim’s warning about materialism rang in my mind. Most people around me behaved like they were possessed. As they grabbed items from the shelves and clothes racks and put them in their trolleys, their eyes sparkled. They probably experienced an orgasm-like feeling, which urged them to buy more and more. The thrill they were getting out of buying turned them into addicts. I promised myself never to be like them.
    TO BE CONTINUED
    .

  3. VIP Member
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    #3

    Re: Freedom, part nine

    teechar,

    Thank you. I see you had a lot of work with this part of my text. Regarding the part of the sentence you marked in blue, I have to tell you that I thought a long time how to phrase it properly, but now I see I didn't write it correctly.
    Would my sentence, including your corrections, be correct like this:

    I could not believe that just few weeks before, I had stood in a long queue for the Red Cross aid in my hometown and was overjoyed if I got a few tins of sardines or a packet of spaghetti more than the last time I was in a queue for the aid.

    I am aware of the difference between a department store and a shopping mall, but at the beginning of 1992 we had no shopping malls in Yugoslavia. The largest shops in which you could buy different products were department stores

    And regarding the sentence you noted in red as illogical, I am wondering if I could write it like this:

    Because Kemal had promised to take me this week to the lake near the refugee centre, which according to him was a great for swimming, I used this opportunity to buy a pair of swimming trunks and also a shaving kit.

  4. teechar's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Freedom, part nine

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    I could not believe that just few weeks before, I had stood in a long queue for the Red Cross aid in my hometown and was overjoyed if I got a few tins of sardines or an extra packet of spaghetti. more than the last time I was in a queue for the aid.
    See corrections.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    I am aware of the difference between a department store and a shopping mall, but at the beginning of 1992 we had no shopping malls in Yugoslavia. The largest shops in which you could buy different products were department stores.
    Okay, that's fine then.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    Because Kemal had promised to take me this that same week to the lake near the refugee centre, which according to him was great for swimming, I used this the opportunity to buy a pair of swimming trunks and I also got myself a shaving kit.
    See corrections.

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