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  • A Day at the Churnet Valley Railway
  • Political Correctness
  • A Wonderful Trip to New York City
  • Thanksgiving Day
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  • Just do it!
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  • Happy Birthday, Mr. King!
  • British poetry today
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    Meet the Wrights
    The grandchildren looking at Christmas presents which they received from their Granddad (Mr Wright) Dear Reader!
    We haven’t heard much of the Wrights lately, have we?
    Well, the family are continuing meet, phone, write letters and emails to each other about what is going on in their respective lives. They also send greeting cards on special seasons like Christmas, birthdays, mothers’ and fathers’ days, holidays, etc.


    A Wonderful Trip to New York City
    My daughter and I had agreed that we wanted to continue the tradition of exchanging gifts with each other at Christmas time, yet we had few material needs and thought it would fit the bill to give each other a weekend in the big city, seeing shows on Broadway and generally taking in the sights and sounds of the most visited city in the world and the home of more than 7 million people.


    Welcome, Change!
    Big Ben, London Dear Reader,
    My warmest and heartiest congratulations to you on the New Year, 2007.
    Though it was not very smooth and there were some unhappy moments, there were also happy ones which only prove the proverb ‘After rain comes fair weather.’ And one of them happened on the eve of the New Year: I came on a visit to my beloved England, where I always feel myself at home due to my best friend, David Wright, who is such a warm, kind, smart and intelligent personality (an excellent conversationalist and erudite scholar) always eager to share his knowledge with the others.


    Winnie-the-Pooh
    Winnie-the-Pooh Dear Reader,
    This year is rich with jubilees; not long ago we marked the 80th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II and the 70th birthday of our permanent author, David Wright. But for the readers of School English, it would be interesting to know that this year is also the 80th birthday of the literary personage Winnie-the-Pooh! Created by Alan Alexander Milne, he is enjoying a long life and has become a loved character for many children (and grown-ups) all over the world. Pooh and his friends are gentle caricatures of human characters and habits of mind. The mood, as in all Milne’s books is relaxed and happy. Milne’s son Christopher Robin was born in 1920 and it was his toy animal that inspired him to write the book which became a children’s best seller for many years to come.


    British poetry today
    Unfortunately, we know almost nothing about it: the books by poets from England, Scotland or Wales are rare guests on the shelves of our shops or libraries. However, it doesn't mean that poetry is no longer alive. To prove this fact, the British Council set up long-term project, the aim of which is to publish the anthology of the modern British poetry in Russia next year. As the result of the poetry translation competition (that had been held on the
    www.britishcouncil.ru in 2005) the group of translators from different regions of our country started immense work.



    A Day at the Churnet Valley Railway
    For various reasons, it had been many years since I was last able to visit 'my' railway. So it was with great enthusiasm that I looked forward to the August Bank Holiday Saturday, when a long-delayed trip was planned. Despite an inauspiciously grey-clouded start to the journey from Runcorn, the weather improved markedly as we approached Staffordshire, a county in the middle of England with some of its most beautiful countryside.



    “What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate”
    Dear Reader,
    This time I would like you to meet Mary Rau Foster again with her Monday Motivating moments, inspirational extracts from the web site on positive thinking. I am sure that we need some things to be pointed to just to say: “I myself thought so!”


    HMS Victory
    I hope you don’t mind if I return to a subject that has already been mentioned at least twice before in ‘School English’. It is a topic that is dear to the heart of all true Englishmen!



    Manchester-Liverpool
    David A Wright with his family presenting his new book, ‘Cheshire Tales’ Dear Reader,
    I have decided to call my September column ‘Manchester- Liverpool’, after the famous tune of the same name which was used by the Soviet TV to accompany the weather forecasts. I am writing it while sitting at the computer in my friend David Wright’s study in Runcorn, UK, which is situated right between Manchester and Liverpool.


    The Old Badger (2)
    Once upon a time ...” began Father, because that is how all the best stories are supposed to start – nobody knows why, but it is, “... there was an Old Badger. He was very old at the time this story starts and even older by the time it finishes.”



    Her Majesty (2)
    Happy and Glorious
    Since her accession, Queen Elizabeth II has had to respond to many situations unimaginable half-a-century ago. Faced with messy divorces, revision of protocol and harsh criticism from her once-admiring press and public, Her Majesty has called upon her years of professionalism to help her through.



    The Old Badger
    Tell us a story, Dad,” pleaded Brock.
    “Yes, Dad, tell us a story,” echoed his sister.
    All children everywhere love stories, don’t they? Especially stories told them by their Dads. It doesn’t really matter very much whether they have heard them before, but new ones are best.


    The 70th birthday of Mr David Alec Wright
    Dear Reader,
    In the previous column we were talking about Queen Elizabeth’s 80th birthday and about its celebrations which take place in April and June.
    This time we’ll be celebrating another birthday. It’s the 70th birthday of our friend and permanent author, the British citizen, Mr David Alec Wright.


    The Scotsman and the London Judge’s Daughter
    Onсе a young Scotsman fell in love with a lady he saw in a dream. He told his father about her.



    Her Majesty
    Dear Reader,
    This time my column was inspired by a BBC documentary about the Queen’s 80th birthday which was shown on our Russian TV.
    Although her real birthday is on April 21, it is traditionally celebrated as an official birthday on the 3rd Saturday of June. Queen Elisabeth II is Britain’s most visible and representative figure. It’s not difficult to spot her in a crowd: immaculate tailoring, vivid colours and almost always a fabulous matching hat. She is a person to admire and respect – and an example to be followed (at least as far as hats are concerned!)


    Two American Folk-Tales
    There are many American folk-tales which make fun of a fellow called Pat. But sometimes Pat makes fun of those who try to make fun of him.


    Netherlands
    Dear Reader,
    Now that there is so much misunderstanding in the world, when it is torn by different religious, racial and cultural contradictions, I would like to touch upon the question of tolerance, ie the ability or willingness to allow or accept something that is unpleasant or that you do not like or agree with.


    Mrs. Twiddle’s Gold
    There was once an old woman called Mrs. Twiddle, whose kitchen chimney needed sweeping. She poked her brush up, and ten pieces of gold came down with the soot. How surprised and glad Mrs. Twiddle was!



    Easter Eggs
    Easter Eggs Dear Readers,
    In April, Christians all over the world are celebrating Easter, one of their favourite holidays.
    Easter is probably the only religious holiday which was celebrated in the USSR even in Soviet times.


    The British National Health Service (3)
    'NHS Direct’offers confidential health advice and information over the phone, 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. The lines are staffed by nurses and professional advisors. Anyone at any time might need emergency or urgent care and they need to be sure that they are routedswiftly to the right place for the right treatment.



    The British National Health Service (2)
    Primary care: The first point of contact most people have with the NHS is with their local family GP or with dentists, pharmacists and opticians. This offers treatment of routine injuries and illnesses as well as preventive care, such as helping people stop smoking, encouraging them to take more exercise and eat more balanced and healthy diet. In the past, GPs were paid by the number of people registered with them, but now attempts are being made to reward practices for the quality of care given rather than the quantity of patients on their books.


    Class Act
    Class Act Dear Readers,
    The materials we publish here now are a bit out-of-date, for the events described took place in November last year, but we savoured them till the International Theatre Day which is celebrated in March. The students who participated in the project acquired many art skills, worked in a team and were able to use their English language skills. I do hope they will never forget this precious experience of creative work and will transfer it into their native language, Russian.


    The Life Is Beautiful
    The British National Health Service Dear Readers, It happened that on St.Valentine’s Day, I had a very personal experience of an organisation which is very closely connected with the symbol of the holiday – the heart. This organisation is the Samara Cardio-Centre. I must confess I was very impressed by the standard of treatment, modern equipment and highly qualified doctors I found there. It proves the truth of the statement that health service is one of the major priorities of the Government of the Russian Federation.


    New Year – New Ways
    Dear Reader,
    Every New Year many of us begin with the decision to start a new life, to turn a new page, so to say. Not everyone will manage it, though. I would like to share with you recommendations given by Mary Rau Foster, whose articles on positive thinking are familiar to you. Please, consider advice. Sometimes, to start something new in our lives, we need some challenge, a push! For me a key ring sent to me by my friend David Wright was such a push! It has a fob made of wood removed from HMS Victory – Nelson’s flagship, during its restoration. This piece of wood is a piece of history! As we did not mention the Bicentenary of the Battle of Trafalgar celebrated last year in London, we will now!


    Silent night
    Dear Reader,
    December is always connected in our minds with the coming holidays: Christmas and New Year.
    And no wonder. They are the brightest celebrations of the year and everyone (young and old) is waiting for them. And everyone (even though not saying it aloud) is waiting for some miracle.


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