In the fictional story “tooth and claw” by T. Corahessan Boyle, Boyle detailed the personal life and experiences of a guy named Junior and the challenges and experiences the goes through in a new place away from his home. The author showcased how life in a new and unfamiliar place can be challenging when you do not have friends or even a job as a solace. In his story, Boyle shows how Junior had a hard time adjusting his life and even when he thought he had found someone whom he could share his feelings with, it turned out that the woman named Daria could not be trusted.
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Relating this to my life, I had a hard time when I moved from my country to study in a different country. Initially I had a hard time adjusting my social life considering the fact that I had never really left my home before for more than two weeks. Our family had always been a closely-knit one and I was very close to my parents and siblings. This day was my turning point in this new place.
The day was gloomier than ever, although there had been little sun in the earlier hours of the day, it had done nothing to lighten up my moods. This had been my normal days since I had left my home country in Qatar to study in this foreign place. Every day that passed, I longed for my home more and more. The large masses of unfriendly people every day, confusing streets, and the heavy traffic forever made me realize that I could never be at home in this foreign place. I could not even find an appropriate term to describe what I felt because despair seemed like a very mild term in the dictionary. The problem was my social life or rather the lack of it. Since I had arrived here, making friends seemed as hard as trying to swim across the Atlantic Ocean. It was practically an impossible mission. Everybody seemed so set up in their lives and did not need any more baggage. I had never felt comfortable in this place maybe it was because it was so different from where I had grown up or the unfamiliarity.
I needed to change the course of my life. This realization emerged as I was making my way through the city square looking for a place to relax and have my ice cream. There were couples everywhere around me and many groups of college students hanging out together for fun. I felt out of place. Then the realization hit me it was a Sunday and there was the trade fair in town. How could I have forgotten that? It had been all over the notice boards at school and everybody was talking about it. The reason I remembered just now was because I never paid much attention to what people had to say in college because mostly it was none of my concern at all.
As I watched the drones of people make their way to the trade fair, a realization struck me like a lightning bolt out of the sky. I needed to redefine myself. I was never this type of person who found it difficult to make friends or even fit in to new environments. I had always been the outgoing guy, the one who everyone wanted to be friends with, the one who was always at top of every and anything going on. I made my way to the trade fair; my resolve was strong there is nothing going to stop me now.
My first stop was the roller coaster. I was quite scared but I had to steel myself if I had to make this work. As I made my way the cutest girl I have ever laid my eyes on approached me.
“looks like you could do with some company” her sweet voice rang out. To say I was mesmerized would have been an understatement of all time. My words clogged in my mouth, all I could do was nod. Yes, I needed company. I could not believe this exquisite-looking lady was asking to help me out. As she took her seat beside me, all I could do was just stare. She started fastening her safety belt. “I am Samantha but everyone calls me Sam so feel free,” she said. Oh, wow, what an appropriate name I thought “I am Daniel,” I said. “Yeah I know you are the new student” she finished off. She knew me, but how, I thought nobody noticed my presence. I was wrong after all; at least someone seemed to have been watching me closely.
I was surprised, I had not expected her to waste time with insignificant me, let alone know my name. She seemed like those girls who only hung out with handsome guys, not people like me. “First time in this fair is usually quite hard, come I’ll show you around” she said as the roller coaster came to a stop. I really had enormous fun as she showed me around then we ate the fluffy papery cones. It was the most amazing time of my life. As darkness approached and it was time to leave, I decided to invite Sam to my apartment, as we drove there we talked over so many things in the car and we really got close. It was late and quite chilly so I invited her in for a cup of coffee. Thirty minutes later, I was cuddled in Sam’s arms sipping my coffee. Things had happened so fast that I could not explain. All I knew was that it really felt good and just sitting lazily listening to my favorite music in the background.
The next morning I woke up feeling exhilarated and my emotions overboard. I felt that this was the break I had needed all along. I believed this was going to be an extremely good day. Sam had said she could not wait to see me the next day in school and I could not wait either.
As I arrived in school, I was feeling quite happy and I began looking around for the person who had brought this happiness to my life. She was nowhere to be seen, but that did not discourage me I knew I was going to find her.
Later as I was getting out of my last class, I was shocked to stumble upon Sam and one of the baseball players wrapped around his legs in a compromising situation in the school locker room. That is when the realization hit me, she was not what I had initially thought her to be. Actually, she was the complete opposite of it. I was lost for words I did not know what to say. I picked my bag dejectedly and walked home. I realized I should not have let myself be carried away like that, but still that was a hard lesson. As I lay on my couch that evening, I knew I could not just trust anyone because I was only going to end hurting myself. Tomorrow will be a new day. Tomorrow will definitely be a new and better day was my last thought as I fell asleep.
In conclusion, life in a new place is challenging mostly because of loneliness. Finding work or friends to share with is hard. Trusting people we do not know could be dangerous because we end being hurt. Junior confirmed this when he, “begin to feel something for the cat, for its bewilderment, its fear and distrust of an alien environment.” Just as Junior found that he could not trust Daria whom he thought was his new friend, I could not trust Samantha.
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