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Model Composition - Write about a time when you were on a holiday

"I told you that shortcut was a bad idea! We were supposed to be in Kanazawa, and now look where we are," my mother chided, the worry evident in her voice.

There was a long pause and as the verdant landscape unfurled beyond the windows of our cheery yellow camper van, a patchwork of lush greenery punctuated by bursts of colorful wildflowers, they did little to sooth father's simmering frustration.

"What's this? Can I eat it?" my annoying brother Jaryl chirped, his voice cutting through the tense silence in the van as he held up a spray bottle adorned with a fierce bear illustration.

My mother's hand shot out, swiftly confiscating the bottle from his grasp. "This is a bear spray," she stated firmly, her tone leaving no room for argument as she stowed it out of his reach with practiced efficiency, barely looking away from the map on her phone. Her brows furrowed in deep concentration and her lips pursed in silent contemplation.

"We are doomed," I intoned deadpan, my words dripping with an unhelpful sense of resignation. There was no hint of urgency or concern in my voice, just a detached acceptance of our fate as if I were merely commenting on the weather. It was only day six of our camper life journey, and my lack of initiative or willingness to contribute to finding a solution hung in the air, adding to the sense of hopelessness that pervaded the cramped confines of our situation.


"The least you can do is to keep your negativity to yourself," mother scolded, her voice tinged with exasperation. 

I rolled my eyes, the weight of her words barely registering as I resumed doomscrolling on my phone indifferently. Clearly, everyone bore some degree of discontent, their faces etched with worry or frustration. Everyone but Jaryl whose carefree demeanor was untouched by the uncertainty of our situation.


"Mum, I'm hungry," he said, rubbing his stomach. I cast him a sidelong glance. He was right - we had skipped breakfast in our haste that morning. Father sighed loudly as he pulled over and the family tumbled out of the vehicle. Mother was her usual fusspot self, fretting over every detail as she bustled about. I did not appreciate her anxious energy and retreated back to my phone.

With the picnic mat laid out perfectly on the ground, Mother began arranging the spread of convenience store food, each item carefully placed with a motherly precision.

"Come, let's take a photo before we tuck in," she suggested.

With a loud sigh, I begrudgingly got into position, my annoyance palpable as I forced a smile for the photo. Just as everyone was ready, the snap of a branch shattered the moment

"What is that?" Jaryl asked, his voice tinged with a hint of fear. 


We peered into the dense foliage, unease creeping into the pits of our stomaches. From the undergrowth, a lumbering form emerged, its hulking silhouette casting a menacing shadow against the verdant backdrop. Each step it took seemed to shake the ground beneath us, sending shivers down our spines. The bear kept its eyes fixed on us, its gaze unwavering and intense. 

"Stay behind me and move very, very slowly back to the van," mother urgently whispered, her voice tinged with a mixture of fear and steel as she positioned herself between us and the beast. She stood her ground, her body language a silent shield of protection as she herded us with steady steps. 

A rumbling growl reverberated through the air like a warning and an involuntary gasp escaped my lips. It tilted its head ever so slightly, as if it has found a target - me. There was a predatory focus in its stare, as if it were sizing me up and I would have collapsed to the ground if not for father holding me up as my knees buckled. "No sudden movements. Look at the ground."

With every step we took backwards, it gained ground, moving towards our breakfast with a chilling precision. The air had an unmistakable aura of danger but mother's selflessness served as a beacon of hope.

Though it was only minutes, it felt like an agonising eternity before the reassuring presence of the van was against my back. Very slowly and quietly, we slipped into the vehicle, each movement measured and deliberate, not wanting to startle the bear which was feasting. Mother was the last, and the gentle click of the door closing echoed softly in the tense silence. 


Our hearts were still pounding. Though we had been warned by the locals about bear sightings, we never expected to encounter one ourselves. It seemed like a distant possibility, a cautionary tale shared by others but never imagined as a reality for us. Yet, here we were, the reality of the situation sinking in as we sat in the safety of our van, shaken but grateful to have escaped unscathed from the encounter.

Mother retrieved the bear spray, clutching it tightly in her hands. Despite her attempts to remain composed, the tension in her grip betrayed the fear that lurked just beneath the surface. I could see the cracks in her facade, the strain of the situation wearing on her.

I hesitated for a moment, but then reached out and gently grasped Mother's trembling hands. 

"Ma, it's alright. It's over."

I met Mother's gaze, offering her a reassuring smile as I squeezed her hands gently. In that silent exchange, I finally understood the profound importance of family. The thought of losing them, of facing the imminent threat of the bear alone, was too scary. It was a stark reminder of the fragility of life and the preciousness of the bonds that held us together. 

Father wasted no time as he started the engine and eased the van into motion, guiding it back along the winding forest road. Jaryl and I stole a glance back through the rearview mirror. The figure of the bear slowly receded into the distance, becoming smaller and smaller until it vanished entirely from view, and only then did the tension gradually ebbed away, replaced by a deep sense of gratitude as we left the danger behind us.

"But, I'm still hungry," Jaryl piped up, his voice breaking the tension with a touch of innocence. Despite the lingering unease, his remark elicited a collective chuckle from the rest of us. 

"I'll navigate to the nearest konbini!" I offered, much to mother's surprise. She paused for a moment, her expression softening before nodding, a faint smile playing at the corners of her lips. It was a small gesture, but in that nod, it felt like something shifted in our relationship.  


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