ADVENTURE is not my cup of tea. I don’t like pizza, I don’t care for Mentos, and I don’t even like Coke or Sprite like every other normal kid. So it’s only natural that someone like me can’t handle the Viking—that evil, treacherous pendulum-like ride you find at outdoor carnivals, the kind that incites the wildest screams.
I would be the last person to get on the Viking, but I did, thanks to my elder sister, who is a complete daredevil. She can be a daredevil all she wants, just don’t involve me, but she did, during the December holidays just before Christmas at the Marina Bay Carnival.
She pulled me onto the ride with an eye for the back-most row, but fortunately, that row and the next got snapped up very quickly by the brave souls. How wonderful I didn’t have to beg her, “No, no, please, no, not the back row!” No one needs to know I’m chicken, though at that very moment, I have to confess I was something of a brave chicken.
If I had been a true chicken, I would have long ago resisted my horrible sister’s pulling, yanking, and dragging. So I was in for the ride. I needed no strength or muscles, just an ounce of courage. The moment the boat started it’s back and forth swing, gentle and slow, the chicken had already started screaming.
I screamed on the way down, I screamed on the way up, I screamed on the way down, louder than when I went up, I screamed and screamed till my voice went hoarse.
At one point, I seemed to have almost lost my voice, and the stupid ship was still rocking away merrily, just as my sister was screaming her giddy, gleeful scream. I, on the other hand, was just going: I want my Mommy! I want someone to rescue me! But Courage never shows his face when Mommy is around. It strangely does, however, when your idiot sister is just sitting next to you.
If it hadn’t been for her, cajoling and bullying me to get on this crazy, mad ride, I wouldn’t ever have tasted the thrills of being a daredevil. She was in cahoots with Courage. She got me to meet him face-to-face. When I clambered out of the ride and felt my feet on terra firma, I did feel a strange sense of triumph.
Courage has nothing to do with strength, courage is about confronting your fears and saying hello to new adventures. Don’t be surprised if you find me eating a pizza soon with a Coca Cola, but getting on a Viking again sometime soon? No way.
Chia Xin Yu, Primary Six
For more essays by Xin Yu, visit Xin Yu Writes.
This essay was written in response to the theme, “courage” and three pictures: (1) firemen in a rescue effort, (2) a crying boy in his mother’s arms, (3) a muscular man showing off his muscles to a kid