The Ark

I stare out over the vast crimson expanse, towering maroon cliffs glowing in the blazing light of the sun, causing mirages from scorching sand dunes to blur the horizon causing it to jump around. Arid air bites at my mouth forcing all moisture out of my body. The sun, still red and large bares down at me, forcing me into compliance as if it is trying to melt me away. Sweat cascades down my skin like the Sahara desert during a flash flood. The wind whips sand across my vulnerable legs, bequeathing them with lacerations, trying to deplete me of my energy. This harsh hostile landscape, not suitable for any life. I summit the small rise and feel a cool breeze wash over me, relieving me of my ache. There, only a few hundred meters away, the sparkling oasis of the ark. It is a lush green sanctuary full of life opposed to the dust red domain encompassing it. It is one piece of our previous life we managed to save before global warming and climate change took over and destroyed our planet. We managed to save around 2000 species which now live in the sanctuary that we call the Ark, named after Noah’s Ark. Walking into the sterile ambience the air conditioners are constantly pumping fresh filtered air into the white expanse. The roof, the radiant glass dome soars overhead. Swooping birds glide above me, the gracious albatross are angels soaring through the bright sky. Lazy lizards bathe in the warm light of the sun. A Fabricated reality trapped in the confines of the Ark, so different to the foreign landscape outside.  

Creeping through lush green bush each step crunching as leaves and moss ooze between my toes. The rustling of leaves exposes inquisitive creatures peeping from the craning canopy. Trees are bustling with life, Ferns and saplings grasp for light clambering over their fallen comrades in a constant battle for survival. The ferocious roar of the raging river thunders into my ears. I approach the fragile wooden swing bridge and hear the taut wires groan as it sways in the breeze. Frail wooden planks creak as my weight comes down on each one. Striding through the lush thicket, flax prongs stretch out concealing the rough path. I emerge out into open grasslands that surround the lush Ark. Towering crimson cliffs now bejewelled with waterfalls cascading down into the valley, thundering water crashing into the pool below showering mist over lush forests. The birds once held captive inside the dome now roam free in the clear blue skies. We have managed to turn the once rugged landscape into a safe oasis with extensive rehabilitation of the environment. We hit global warming hard and managed to turn the tide, the Earth is now rejuvenated into its full beauty.  

1.8 Significant Connections

As Humans, we can be knocked down easily by things throughout each of our lives. In order to survive, we need to have the mental strength and ability to overcome those hardships in order to survive and eventually thrive. However, depending on our experiences and upbringing there are many ways we react in order to survive. This idea is present throughout the texts: Touching the Void written by Joe Simpson, Into Thin Air written by Jon Krakauer, 127 Hours directed by Danny Boyle based on the book Between a Rock and a Hard Place by Aron Ralston, and Unbroken directed by Angelina Jolie based on the novel by Laura Hillenbrand, Unbroken.

In the novel Touching the Void, by Joe Simpson, the author shows that to survive difficult circumstances, you need to have immense mental strength to be able to overcome the challenges and hardship you are suffering. Joe shows this strength when he and his climbing partner are scaling the previously unclimbed West face of Siula Grande.  But despite all the hardship, Joe displays immense mental strength when he escapes from the void and is crawling on his hands and broken leg down the mountain. Joe references the “voice” that keeps him going and wanting to survive despite the hallucinations that are causing him to give up. He describes this ‘voice’ to be his inner conscience, talking and motivating him to survive. This is important because if this ‘voice’ had not been there to guide him, it is likely he would have given in to despair and eventually perished. Touching the Void paints a clear picture of why the importance of being mentally strong in high-risk environments, where your situation could change instantly for the worse and there is only yourself for help.

In the novel Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer, Rob Hall shows that no matter how hard you can sometimes try to survive, it doesn’t always work out as you might hope. This was demonstrated by Rob when he is fighting to get down Everest before the storm hits. But ultimately “survival was not an option”. Throughout Rob’s battle to survive, he was constantly thinking rationally which enabled him to endure for as long as he did.  This is because “above the South Col, up in the Death Zone, survival is to no small degree a race against the clock.” This informs the reader that this place is known as the “Death Zone” for good reason. As soon as you’re above 8,000 meters, your body starts slowly dying due to oxygen deprivation. The longer you spend in the death zone, the less likely your chances of survival. Rob knew this but still decided to stay with Doug and take him to the top because he felt he couldn’t leave his client behind. When On the West Face trapped by the weather Rob calls his wife to say “I’m not going to get killed,” This shows the confidence Rob has, as an experienced climber. At this point in his adventure, all he could see were opportunities and excitement but underestimated the danger of Everest. All he had in his mind was to climb the mountain, failure simply hadn’t entered his mind  Rob also says “If you don’t hear from me again, it means everything’s fine”. This show Rob’s absolute confidence, even when the conditions are so incredibly inhospitable. He keeps his head clear and doesn’t think about death. He absolutely believes, till the very end, that he will survive. This is the opposite to Touching the Void, because when Joe falls breaking his leg, he immediately assumes he will not survive. “I accepted that I was to die. There was no alternative.” This infers that Joe does not appear to have the mental strength to survive and seems likely to give in to death. But then Joe changes his focus and believes that he can survive. He has a total change of mindset. “I knew without absolute certainty. How I would do it, and when I would reach it were not considered. I just knew.” This new mindset ultimately led to his survival. Whereas, in Into Thin Air when the storm hits Rob is constantly fighting to survive and is not giving in. Only when he realizes that he is trapped and cut off by the storm, he finally gives in knowing that survival is not an option.

In the film 127 hours by Danny Boyle, Aaron shows the viewer that regardless of how much preparation you put in, it does not prepare you for if disaster strikes. Aaron shows this when he is running in Canyonland, Utah. When walking through Blue John Canyon, a boulder dislodges and falls, trapping his right arm. The remoteness of Canyonland is shown clearly by a panorama of the barren landscape, This shot is used to show the isolation and emptiness of the environment, This also foreshadows that if something does go wrong, no help is readily on the way. This foreshadowing becomes reality when Aaron gets trapped by the bolder. The camera zooms out of the canyon to show the vastness and expanse of the landscape where he is trapped. This shows the reader that no help is on the way and there is no chance of rescue. This is also shown when Aaron, talking to himself says “Hey there, Aaron! Is it true that you didn’t tell anyone where you were going?” This makes the reader feel despair for Aaron knowing that no one will find him and that survival is unlikely. This is similar to Into Thin Air, where Rob is stranded and cut off from help, fully understanding that there is no rescue. Rob gives up just above the South Summit where he then stays. Whereas Aaron knowing he is trapped with no help, takes action eventually cutting his arm off to survive.

In the Film Unbroken, Directed by Angelina Jolie, Louie Zamperini shows the viewer that to endure and survive through times of suffering, hardship, and torture you need to have tremendous mental strength. Louie shows this throughout his journey from drifting aimlessly for 47 days, to then surviving for two years in a Japanese prison camp. He managed to survive due to his mental ability to keep his mind sharp and to never give up. An example of this is Louie’s persistence and determination shown by the comment by his brother “if you can take it you can make it”, which tells the viewer that Louie will never give up and he will keep going no matter what comes at him. This is also shown by the bridging shot of Louie running along the road, growing up and becoming faster. During his time on the raft and in capture he manages to endure at first the solitude and then the torture from his captives. He absolutely believes he will survive, shown by when Louie repeats the comment “If you can take it you can make it”. The viewer is shown that this persistence and determination is present throughout his life when Louie says “All my life I have always finished the race. When saying this, Louie didn’t just mean the running races, but it is extended to all of his life, telling us that he never gives in. This is similar to Touching the Void, where both men are mentally strong and when disaster does occur, they are prepared and can rationally think in order to survive, But ultimately Louie was mentally stronger than Joe because Louie never once gave in. He was determined the whole time, whereas Joe flicked from giving in and not wanting to survive when he was being slid down the mountain this showed that Joe could not cope with the pain and lost sight of the survival he was ultimately trying to reach. He was not able to keep his mind on survival and lost focus when the pain became unbearable. Joe was lucky that he was able to make rational decisions to get himself out of the void and survive because if not he would have likely not survived.  Louie survived through the torture and suffering because of his discipline and a strong mindset. We can learn from Louie that with enough determination and passion to live anyone from anywhere can survive.  

In the novel Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer, Beck Weathers shows that with determination and mental strength, any human can battle with death and survive what is considered unsurvivable. Beck show this when just above the South Col, on a section known as the Balcony, his sight becomes impaired due to an operation a few years before. He was left on the South Col to wait for the group’s return. But as the conditions deteriorated, he managed to get down to 100m above Camp 4, where he was left with Yasuko Namba, who was suffering from severe altitude sickness. He was left for dead twice by the sherpas because he was thought to be beyond saving, due to being in a hypothermic coma. But that night Beck miraculously crawled into camp 4 where he was given a tent. They all thought he would die in the night, especially when his tent collapsed. But he miraculously survived the night and then managed to get down to the Khumbu Icefall where a military helicopter subsequently managed to pick him up and take him to the hospital in Kathmandu (this is still the highest recorded helicopter flight). This goes to show what the human body can do when put to the test, Beck later tells us that when he woke from his hypothermic coma, “I looked up and the sun was about 15 degrees above the horizon and heading down, so I knew that I had one more hour to live. Nobody has ever survived two nights on Everest in the open”. This demonstrates that Beck knew the severity of his situation and had the mental ability to endure. This is similar to Unbroken because both Beck and Louie continued fighting for their lives and they never once gave up. 


I believe that, when put to the test, humans can survive through what might previously be considered unsurvivable circumstances. The non-fiction texts Touching the Void, Into Thin Air, 127 Hours and Unbroken, each demonstrate that as humans, we can be knocked down easily by things in our lives. And in order to survive, we need to dig deep and find the mental strength and ability to overcome those hardships to ultimately survive. 


1.1 Written text essay

Describe at least one important technique in the written text. Explain how this technique/s helped you understand one or more key ideas.

In the non-fiction text Touching the Void, Simon Yates, and Joe Simpson attempted the first ascent of the West Face of the 6,244-metre tall Siula Grande, located in the Peruvian Andes. During their decent, Joe fell shattering his kneecap. With no hope of rescue, the men decided to attempt descent together with Simon lowering Joe 300 feet at a time in a slow, painful process. Simon unknowingly then lowered Joe over the lip of a crevasse. With the gradient having gone from steep to vertical, he was no longer able to hold on.  Expecting that they were about to be pulled jointly to their deaths, Simon made the decision to cut the rope. Joe Simpson captures the audience through the techniques of foreshadowing and symbolism to engage the reader and to show what it was like to endure what he did, and to make it out alive.

Foreshadowing was used to show the idea that disaster will more likely occur in high altitude environments. We see this at the start of the novel,  during Joe Simpsons and Simon Yates ascent of the previously unscaled West face of Siula Grande.  At the beginning of the novel climber, Joe states that “the daunting 4,500-foot West Face had so far defeated all attempts”. Joe also describes the location as being “hostile and remote”. He states that “there were no climbers no helicopters and no rescue, just us and the mountains”. Also, as he and Simon Yates are leaving for the big first ascent, they say to Richard “You’ll probably jump to all sorts of conclusions after three days but try not to worry. We know what we are doing, and if something does go wrong there is nothing whatever you can do”. This shows that the climb is extremely difficult, even for experienced climbers, and that if an accident occurs during their ascent of Siula Grande, there is no rescue.

This foreshadowing comes true when they are descending off the summit and Joe falls off the face. “As the hammer came out there was a sharp cracking sound and my right hand, gripping the axe, pulled down. The sudden jerk turned me outwards and instantly I was falling, Both knees locked as I struck the slope. I felt a shattering blow in my knee, felt bones splitting, and screamed.” Joe knows that because he has broken his leg, he will most likely not survive. He also states “We were above 19,000 feet, still on the ridge, and very much alone…I looked at the small rise I had hoped to scale quickly…I would never get over it. Simon would not be able to get me up it. He would leave me. He had no choice.” This gives the reader insight into just how serious the situation is. This foreshadowing makes the reader feel anticipation for what comes next, it makes us realise how alone the climbers are and how far away they are from safety. The reader also feels despair for Joe who does not know that disaster will occur. People often do dangerous acts to get an adrenaline rush or a buzz from it, but in climbing, it is more about the experience and the journey than anything else. Mountaineering comes with significant risks but the experience outweighs all of them. This relates back to Sir Edmund Hillary’s famous quote “It’s not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves”.

The symbol of the rope was used to show the key idea of trust in the section of the text when Joe Simpson is being lowered down the mountain by the rope connecting him to Simon Yates. Joe is being lowered off Siula Grande because he can not descend the mountain without Simons assistance. But because of the weather conditions affecting visibility, Simon does not realise that he is lowering Joe off an ice cliff. Joe’s narration states “ the ropes suddenly whipped out through my gloves…tugged sharply at my harness, pulling me chest first into the slope…Simon must have fallen…the ropes remained taut with his body weight.” Also, Joe recounts from another ascent “We hung on that fragile rope for twelve formidable hours”.  These quotes show the reader the idea that the rope acts as a bond between the climbers mentally and physically, it symbolises trust, accountability, and safety. It shows that Simon believes he could get down, but he stays and helps Joe despite knowing he will quite possibly die as well. Joe also feels helpless believing that they will both die no matter what Simon does. Joe believes that Simon will not cut the rope, shown when Joe says, “Either he would die in his seat or be pulled from it by the constant strain of my body”. 

The symbol of the rope also shows how easily the trust and bond can be broken. “The taut rope exploded at the touch of the blade”. “I saw the rope flick down, and my hopes sank. I  stared at the frayed end. Cut! I couldn’t take my eyes off it”. This shows the reader that despite the bond between them, Simon still valued his own life over Joe, and betrayed the trust by cutting the rope. This makes the reader feel despair and sympathy for Joe who has done everything he can to survive, but was all in vain. This reminds us of our own personal experiences such as when we work hard to gain the trust of others,  but find that bond can all be destroyed by the smallest things. It makes us realise how fragile trust can be. It is human nature is to be selfish and self-centered in order to survive, so to trust someone with your life is an extremely difficult thing to do. Joe trusted Simon with his life but in the end, Simon betrayed that trust and bond by cutting the rope.

In the passage of the text when Joe Simpson falls into the crevasse the symbol of the Void is used to show the key idea of death. Joe is lowered off a cliff by Simon Yates as they are descending the mountain. But because of the weather and the time of day, Simon does not realise that he is lowering Joe into the void. Joe states “Something terrible, something dark with dread occurred to me, and as I thought about it I felt the dark thought break into panic”. Also, as he has just fallen into the void, Joe states “I lay still, with open mouth, open eyes staring into blackness”. After Simon has cut the rope, in his dreams he “ sensed that something awful was hidden in the powder avalanches swirling madly through the black night below my snow cave.” These quotes show the reader the idea that the void symbolises death and despair through the continuous use of the word “Darkness” and the comment of  “Down in the frozen dark chaos below”. These allow the reader to understand the connection between the void and death. Joe feels he can not escape the void. He feels trapped when he says, “The darkness beyond the light gripped my attention. I could guess what it hid, and I filled with dread”. This proves to the reader that Joe is afraid of the void and the death and darkness that comes with it.  The reader also feels sympathy for Joe, who has fought and fought to survive but has still ended up as another victim to the void. We can strongly relate to this when we experience various types of difficulty in our lives. However, we may never be able to understand Joe’s life or death situation. We can only feel emotions such as compassion, empathy, emptiness, and sympathy as we absorb Joe’s words.

In conclusion, the language techniques of foreshadowing and symbolism helped me to understand the key ideas of disaster, trust and death in the novel ‘Touching the Void’.  Foreshadowing was used to help me understand the idea of disaster by giving me a sense that it is very likely to occur in high altitude environments. The technique of symbolism was also used in two ways. The rope was used as a symbol of trust, and the void was used as a symbol of death. The rope illustrated the strength of the bond between the climbers, and the void represented the ever-present risk of death in that environment.





1.1 Written Text Essay -“Touching The Void”


  1. Symbolism, Mountain, Rope, Voice
  2. Narrative Voice / Narrative Perspective / Point of Narration: Joe Simpson and Simon Yates
  3. Figurative Language: Simile, Metaphor, Personification, Hyperbole
  4. Imagery: the Combination of Descriptive Language and Techniques for certain effects
  5. Conflict (Tension-filled moments) – Created through word choice and syntax
  6. Syntax (sentence structure) – Different types have different effects
  7. climax / turning point – syntax – word choice – dialogue
  8. Dialogue – Different speaker traits


English 1.6B v3 Speeches

How much do you really love your freedom? How about those home comforts? Do you kinda take for granted the regularity of your daily life, daily routine…you know, just the known and familiar stuff? Imagine for a moment…having that all stripped away or taken from you! Everything! Imagine having to flee your homeland and live in exile in a foreign country, because of who you are or what you believe in or stand for? Sound rough, unfair…or maybe actually really really scary????

Today I’m going to talk to young about an amazing human being who really has been a world changer. He’s faced some pretty significant challenges and has taught the world some profound lessons in the message he shares. We can learn a heck of a lot both through the content of his lessons, and also by the dignified way he shares them.

Let me introduce you to the Lhamo Thondup, also known to most as the Dalai Lama, who at the age of 15 had to do just this…

As the 14th Dalai Lama, he could’ve rightly assumed that he would spend his reign in the relative luxury of Potala Palace in Lhasa Tibet. Unfortunately, Politics or ‘international relations’ got in the way. The Peoples Republic of China laid claim to and invaded Tibet in 1959, and their relative animosity and aggression towards the Tibetan people really put the Dalai Lama on shaky ground.

The Chinese army forced compliance at gunpoint, fast-tracking the throning of the Dalai Lama, and the official naming of him as spiritual leader of 6 million Tibetan people. Sure, he’d been in training since he was roughly 3 years old and had been raised and taught by monks to take on this role. But it was the eventual invasion of the Chinese that threw him firmly and officially into the hotseat if you like. Quite a responsibility, especially when the invading army are set to rip your nation apart, or force you into submission. The people surrounding, training and protecting the Dalai Lama tried desperately to stop the Chinese invasion. But the Chinese used rather dirty tactics, forging official seals to persuade delegations of various areas of Tibet into submission. They also used guns, and they’re pretty convincing. The Dalai Lama’s  requests for help from other nations went unanswered, or the responses were not as he hoped. Tibet was left realizing that they faced the inevitable. Imagine how devastating and terrifying this must have been for the young leader, particularly since he’d only just been officially appointed or given the job!

Once this invasion, known as the ‘Tibetan Uprising’, was a certainty, some pretty big decisions had to be made. Knowing that he faced certain imprisonment, and possibly death, at the hands of the Chinese invaders, the only way he could continue to serve his followers and religion effectively was to actually flee his homeland.  The Dalai Lama was forced to leave everything he had ever known and everything that was familiar in Tibet, he was forced to take an enormous step outside his comfort zone if you like.

Often we think of comfort zones as in a physical sense, we think of physical hardship and challenge or suffering, but stepping outside your comfort zone applies equally to cultural and spiritual challenges or hurdles. When the Dalai Lama moved into exile in India he faced a huge cultural and spiritual challenge because he still carried the enormous responsibility of spiritual leadership of millions, but needed to now carry out this role from a new and foreign location. And just remember, he’d only just been officially throned! The challenge was unavoidable, his faith and his message to his followers mattered too much to him.

The Dalai Lama fled to exile in McLeod Ganj, India, where he currently lives to this day. 80,000 Tibetan refugees followed him into exile, which is a pretty significant show of support for a spiritual leader really. They were fleeing the aggression of the Chinese, but also wanted to follow and feel safe in the presence of their leader. McLeod Ganj has been nicknamed Little Lhasa or Dhasa, due to its population consisting mostly of Tibetans. The official Tibetan government in exile is located here along with the Dalai Lamas Temple and the Tibetan museum containing thousands of exquisite artifacts salvaged from Tibet, despite the best efforts by the Peoples Republic of China to destroy anything remotely Tibetan, or to control anything coming in or out of Tibet.

So we can probably all agree that the 14th Dalai Lama had a rather different experience at 15 to what we’ve all been living here in our own comfort zones here in Wanaka. But it’s not the upheaval, the fleeing his homeland or his living in exile that has really stamped his mark. The Dalai Lama has made a difference and continues to make a difference because of what he gives to the people of this world. It’s his message about life, about living, about priorities and what’s important or what actually matters that has really made him a well-loved and well-respected individual.

Despite being a leader of the Buddhist faith, the Dalai Lamas message on a wide range of important topics, including human rights, non-violence, environmental issues, astronomy, health and even neuroscience, has drawn huge respect from people of all faiths from all around the world. His quiet, yet important message about so many areas, from really simple to really complex aspects of life and humanity, have drawn widespread support and respect all over the globe. This ultimately resulted in him being awarded the 1989 Nobel Peace Prize.

In addition to the messages he shares on such a wide range of important humanitarian topics and world issues, his own personal journey or story can teach us many lessons that we can all incorporate into our daily lives. Doing what you think is right and staying true to your principles or beliefs, may sometimes require an unconventional approach or deviating from your original plan. His original plan was to rule as a leader in Tibet. That changed, but his life’s work and message to his followers has not. We can also learn that life sometimes throws up unexpected and complex situations, that require you to adapt and refocus in order to achieve your goal or do the work you feel you need to do. He’s done this. We have much to learn from this great leader. He leads by example. He is a world changer and someone who has achieved great things, ironically by teaching about the small stuff, and all of this from outside his comfort zone.

As The Dalai Lama often says:  My religion is simple, my religion is kindness. He continues to travel the world teaching us these lessons. While the setting and location might change, good works with good intentions have a profound impact no matter where you are in the world.



Shadows in the Ice – Chapter 7

1) Contrast is used to show Joe’s conflicting feelings and experiences in this chapter. Joe uses the contrast between the dark black void below and the bright white light of the sky above, Joe describes himself caught between the two having to choose whether to climb up into the light and survive or to fall to his death and demise.
2) The rope in the text shows the connection and accountability that exists between Joe and Simon. and when Simon cuts the rope this connection gets destroyed. and when Joe is in the void and he tugs on the loose rope and it falls into the gap Joe feels a great sense of dread and betrayal.

The Final Choice – Chapter 6

1) Some of the problems the men face trying to get down the mountain include: The face that they were descending was coated in thick powder snow, meaning they could not get a good anchor point for a belay. this meant that Simon had to dig a seat in the snow so he could lower joe. “but the seat would only just survive the length of the rope” and so Simon would have to lower joe fast, this caused Joe’s leg to snag on the slope and cause joe intense agony.

They only had two 150 foot ropes and they knotted them together to form one 300 foot rope, but this meant that there was a knot in the rope and so when half the rope had come through joe would have to take his weight off the rope so Simon could unclip the belay plate and reattach it onto the other side of the Knot.

2) as Joe realizes he is approaching the cliff he starts using different syntax to engage the reader and draw them into the moment, “It was the slope”, “Of course”, “I was approaching another drop”, “I had to stop!”. he uses short simple sentences to build up the tension at that moment

Disaster-Chapter 5 (Climax)

  1. When Joe shatters his knee joint, it is one of the most climactic moments in the text. Joe uses extremely descriptive language to explain how it felt to experience this and to draw the reader into the moment, an example of this is “My knee exploded, Bone grated and the fireball rushed from groin to knee.” this hyperbole and metaphor tells us exactly how he feels and what he is going through his head at that moment. Joe uses the comment “Something terrible something dark with dread occurred to me, and as I thought about it I felt the dark thought break into panic: I’ve broken my leg, that’s it I’m dead!'” to make us understand how extreme this disaster is and that death is the likely outcome. Joe also often refers to the pain as a fire: “the fireball rushed”,”a fierce burning ball”,”Stabs of fire”,”Pouring on fire” he uses this repetition to portray the idea of how the pain feels and to personify the pain and make it seem as if the fire is torturing him. Joe might also use the idea of fire to portray the pain as it contrasts the snow and ice of the mountains.

  2. When joe shattered his knee in the text he uses simons opinion to tell a different perspective of the disaster and explain how it felt for Simon as well as joe because in the situation Simon tells us that “he could get down the mountain by himself” but would have to leave joe, or he could risk both of them dying but he might be able to get both of them down the mountain. but Simon decided to try get Joe down and “It never occurred to me that I might also die, I accepted it without question.
    The use of Simons perspective also tells us how Simon plans to get them down the East Face safely and what he has to do to lower joe. at this moment Joe is only really thinking about his leg and the pain, so it is good to get a different perspective of the event.
    Joe interviewed Simon about his experiences in sections of their journey on Siula Grande and recounted what he believed to be Simon’s perspective of these experiences, Simon said that these recounts were accurate to his thoughts and feelings. this tells us that in the text all of Simons perspectives where not actually his own but an opinion of Joes, to what Simons perspective was at the time of the event. “Simon said that these recounts were accurate to his thoughts and feelings” this shows that Simon believes that what Joe has written is accurate to the truth but it still cannot be simons perspective because it was written by Joe

Tempting Fate – Chapter 2

in chapter 2 of Touching the Void Simon and his climbing partner have a very special relationship shown by the comment by Joe, “he was an easy friend”, the text also suggests that Simon is a role model for Joe and that Joe aspires to be like him. When Simon and Joe are climbing up the ice cliffs there is a huge amount of trust for each other’s abilities involved to make it up the mountains and overcome the challenges at hand.
at the start of the chapter, they are both enthusiastic about the climb and keen for the challenge but nearer the end Simon and Joe are starting to worry the might not be able to find a snow hole before dark the chapter ends with a flashback of a time joe was climbing in the alps and the ledge they had a bivi in collapsed and they where hanging in midair with nothing but their bedrolls waiting for a rescue.

Role of the author

  1. “The dreamers of the day are dangerous me, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible”
    That the people who dream at day try to act their dreams with open eyes are dangerous because they are taking risks that are life-threatening.

  2. Joe likes being in the mountains. He enjoys the exhilarating feeling of the remote wilderness and there were no climbers no helicopters and no rescue just them and the mountains.

  3. The lines “he was an easy friend: dependable, sincere, ready to see life as a joke… a touch of madness that makes just a few people so special” tells us that Joe has quite a special relationship and they have been friend for a long time the passage “Simon was keeping a steady pace that matched mine” suggests that Joe and Simon are quite evenly matched and “there where few other people that I could’ve coped with.

  4. “Simon and I had found Richard resting in a sleazy hotel in Lima, halfway through his six-month exploration of South America.” this passage tells us that Richard likes to explore the world living off the grid and traveling to remote places living cheaply as shown when “He had lived off grubs and berries with pygmies wile dug-out canoeing through the rain. forests of Zaire.” and when “his traveling companion was shot dead by trigger-happy soldiers in Uganda.” Simon and Joe probably were quite impressed by Richards lifestyle and where happy for him to come along with them to basecamp and also to watch over the camp while Joe and Simon were climbing.

  5. When Joe says, “We were in the middle of the Cordillera Huayhuash, in the Peruvian Andes, separated from the nearest village by twenty-eight miles of rough walking.” it tells us that if something was to go wrong and they needed rescue they where a long way from any sort of civilisation and a very long way from help this foreshadows the idea that they will need rescue and something will go wrong.

  6. When Joe was alone climbing in the mountains he repeated the chant “We can do it… we can do it…” He probably did this to keep his mind on the task at hand and to make sure he was focused, because when mountaineering the cold can affect the human brain and cause it to make stupid decisions. the chant could also be to keep them motivated and with the feeling that they could do it.