Going Places by A. R. Barton – Important Questions

Going Places is written by A. R. Barton. In the story he explores the theme of adolescent fantasizing and hero worship.

Important Questions with Answers

Q. What is unrealistic about Sophie’s dream of her future life?

Ans. Sophie dreams of achieving things she has no access to. She belong to a lower middle class family but dreams of owning a boutique, or becoming an actress, or a manager. Moreover instead of working towards her goals, she just dreams about them.

Q. How are Jansie and Sophie different from each other?

Ans. Jansie’s feet are grounded in reality while sophie is a day dreamer. Jansie is very practical in thinking that people of there stature can only become workers in a biscuit factory, whereas Sophie dreams that she will become successful actress, a fashion designer, a store manager or even an owner of a boutique.

Q. Why does Jansie discourage Sophie from living in a world of fantasy?

Ans. Jansie is a practical girl who knows that Sophie gets lost in her dream world. She understands that the world Sophie talks and dreams about is beyond them. So she discourages Sophie from escaping in that world.

Q. Where was it most likely that the two girls would find work after school?

Ans. Sophie and Jansie would soon pass out of their school. Only a few months were left. They knew very well that both of them were most likely to find work in the local biscuit factory. They belonged to the lower middle class family and could not go in for higher studies after school. Besides, they could not think of other job options.

Q. How do we know that Sophie’s family lived in poor circumstances?

Ans. The house that Sophie lived in was not in a good condition. The family members are simple unsophisticated people while Sophie dreams of a fancy world. The father is described as grimy and sweaty, ‘scooping shepherd’s pie in his mouth as hard as he could, while the mother was shown washing dishes. The house was steamy and the atmosphere choked Sophie.

Q. Why did Sophie like her brother Geoff more than any other person?

Ans. Sophie found in her brother, Geoff a patient listener to all her fantasies and also one she could confide in. The other members of her family and even her friend Jansie made fun of her fantastic stories. This made her quite fond of Geoff.

Q. Why was Sophie jealous of her brother’s silence?

Ans. Geoff was silent and did not share his experiences with anyone. Sophie always pondered over the areas of his life which he never talked about. His world remained a fascination for her. She felt that when he was not speaking, his mind was away at some unknown Place, and so she felt jealous of him.

Q. Why did Sophie want to be admitted into Geoff’s affections?

Ans. Sophie wanted to be admitted into Geoff’s affections because she used to envy Geoff’s world which was not accessible to her. He never discussed where he went. His life therefore held a lot of fascination for her and she wanted to be a part of it.

Q. Does Geoff believe what Sophie says about her meeting with Danny Casey?

Ans. Geoff finds it hard to believe the story of Sophie’s meeting Danny Casey. He knew that her stories were never true and he couldn’t believe this one as well. Sophie tries to convince him by even describing Casey’s appearance. He might have believed her story partially, for he tells about it to Jansie’s brother Frank.

Q. How did Sophie’s father react when Geoff told him about her meeting with Danny Casey? Or Does her father believe her story?

Ans. Sophie’s father is a realist to the core and is quite critical of her daydreaming. He does not believe in Sophie’s story at all and dismisses it as another of her wild fantasies. When Geoff tells him about Sophie’s chance encounter with Danny Casey, the Irish prodigy, he expresses disdain and rubbishes her story. He warns Sophie that these stories will someday put her into trouble.

Q. Why is Sophie attracted to Danny Casey?

Ans. Danny Casey is a young, tall and handsome football player who is successful. Romantic young girls of Sophie’s age indulge in daydreaming about things beyond their reach or means. Naturally, she was attracted to him.

Q. Why did Sophie wriggle when Geoff told her father that she had met Danny Casey?

Ans. Sophie knew her father well. He would be angry if he knew of her meeting with the young Irish footballer, Danny Casey. She didn’t tell him. When Geoff told his father about it, he became angry. He turned his head to look at her with disdain. Sophie wriggled where she sitting at the table.

Q. Did Geoff keep his promise? How do you know?

Ans. Geoff did not keep his promise. He told Jansie’s brother about Sophie’s claim of having met Danny Casey. Jansie came to know ab out Danny Casey and questioned Sophie about him. However, Geoff had not told them about the date so that remained a secret.

Q. Which was the only occasion when she got to see Danny Casey in person?

Ans. The only occasion when Sophie got to see Danny Casey in person was, when she, along with her family, went to watch a football match of their team, United. Sophie was sitting amongst the spectators and could see her hero Casey only from a distance.

Q. Why Sophie didn’t want Jansie to know about her story with Danny? Or Why didn’t Sophie want Jansie to know about her meeting with Danny Casey?

Ans. Sophie did not want Jansie to know about her meeting with Danny because she thought Jansie would not believe her. Moreover, she knew that she would tell the whole neighborhood. Sophie didn’t want this meeting to reach her father’s ears or else she would be in trouble.

Q. What thoughts came to Sophie’s mind as she sat by the canal?

Ans. Sophie was waiting for Danny Casey, sitting by the canal. In the beginning, she imagined him coming, and even began to fantasize his actions and dialogues. However, after sometime, when he did not turn up, reality hit her and she became sad. She thought that her family would never believe her. She also thought that Geoff would be disappointed.

Q. What is your impression of Sophie’s brother Geoff?

Ans. Geoff is grown up boy. He left school three years ago. Now he is an apprentice mechanic. He has to travel to his work each day to the far side of the city. He speaks little but listens to his sister’s wild stories. But he is not a day dreamer like her. He know the financial limitations of the family. He cautions Sophie against entertaining dreams for a celebrity like Danny Casey.

Q. What were Sophie’s plans for her future ? Why would you call her dreams unrealistic?

Ans. Sophie was teenager who day dreamt most of the times. Her dreams were to open a boutique or to become a fashion-designer. She wanted to be an actress too. She always planned to do something which did not belong to the people of middle class. Her family conditions were not good and so her dreams seemed to be unrealistic and impractical. Her friend, Jansie, unlike Sophie lived in a world of reality and knew that both of them were earmarked for a biscuit-factory. Opening a boutique or becoming a fashion.-designer were next to impossible. Sophie had neither the means nor money to raise herself to the standard of becoming an actress or a fashion- designer. She had many limitations which she was not aware of. She lacked the skills also to achieve those dreams. Thus, we can say that her dreams were unrealistic and practically impossible.

Q. Why did Sophie enjoy living in world of dreams? Describe some of her dreams.

Ans. Sophie enjoyed her life. She is like any other teenager who lived in her own dreams. Though in her case her dreams were a little farfetched. She dreamt of opening her boutique and she imagined herself to be a national like Mary Quant. This shows that she is too imaginative. Another dream that she had, was that she had met Danny Casey a famous player and had talked to him for a while. This meeting was just a figment of her imagination as she had really not met him. It was her dream that she wanted to meet him and concocted a story about it. She was a highly imaginative and had a fertile imagination. She was quite unrealistic and both her dreams show her to be impractical.

Q. Sophie lives in a world full of dreams which she does not know she cannot realise. Comment. Or Sophie’s dreams and disappointments are all in her mind. Discuss.

Ans. Sophie always lives in a make-believe world of her own. She always imagined that she would have a successful career as a boutique owner, store manager, actress or fashion-designer. Jansie always used to bring her down to earth by remarking that both of them were earmarked to be working in the local biscuit factory after passing out from school. Similarly, she always imagined that a famous footballer like Danny Casey would date her. She even went to the extent of waiting beside the canal for him. After he did not turn up, she realised that this was only her dream and Danny would never date her. Even then, she was lost in her dream world, becoming sad that Danny did not come.

Q. How different is Jansie from Sophie? Or Compare and contrast Sophie and Jansie highlighting their temperament and aspirations.

Sophie and Jansie were classmates and friends. Both friends are teenagers. Sophie belongs to a lower middle class family. She is a daydreamer. She always indulges in fantasy. She wishes to have the finest boutique in the city. Although, she has no money and no means, she is confident that she would be a manager, a fashion-designer or an actress right away.

Jansie is a practical girl. She is aware of the away. realities of life. She does not have any dreams. She is simple and down to earth. She knows limitations. She knows that she belongs to a lower middle class family and is destined to work in a biscuit factory. She also discourages Sophie from Having such dreams because Sophie’s dreams are wild and impossible. She had neither the means nor the skills to achieve them.

Q. Did Sophie really meet Danny Casey?

Ans. No, Sophie has never really met Danny Casey. She has just seen Danny Casey on the field when she went to watch the team United play a football match. There, she was one of the spectators and could see Casey playing, but only from a distance. However, Sophie lives in a world of imagination. Casey was a young sports hero and Sophie idolised him. Her fictitious meeting with Casey was just another of her wild fantasies. Sophie told her brother Geoff that she had met Casey near Royce’s window. As she was looking at the clothes, Casey came and stood beside her. She wanted to take his autograph for her younger brother Derek, but neither of them had a pen or paper. Casey then suggested that they could meet again next week, and then he would also give his autograph.

Q. Attempt a character sketch of Sophie as a woman who lives in her dreams.

Ans. Sophie belongs to a lower middle class family. Her family conditions are not so good. She is a daydreamer. She indulges in fantasy. Her dreams are wild, impractical and impossible. She thinks the world is waiting to receive her with open arms. Although she has no money and no means. She dreams of having a boutique in the city. She is confident that she would be a manager, a fashion-designer or an actress right away. Her dreams are wild and impossible. She has neither the means nor the skill to achieve them. She makes up the story of meeting Danny Casey, a Young charming and upcoming footballer. Nobody believes her but she refuses to accept that it is her dream. Rather, she starts believing that she has met him. To show that she is telling the truth, she makes up another story that she has fixed a date with him. She is so lost in her dream that she does actually goes to the canal and waits for him. He does not show up. Her dreams have become an integral part of her life, and she cannot distinguish between her world of imagination and the real world.

Q. Draw a character sketch of Sophie’s father.

Ans. Sophie’s father is a typical man believing to the working class. He is the sole provider of the family. We first meet him as a coarse, ill-mannered man stuffing shepherd pie into his mouth, wearing his dirty and sweaty vest. He is a practical person who never leaves the world of harsh reality. He wants Sophie to step out of her dream world and tells her that her habit of making up stories is going to land her into trouble some day. He goes to the pub to celebrate something as frivolous as a football match. Thus, he is quite selfish. In spite of being the head of an impoverished family with so many mouths to feed, we never see him indulging in self-pity or cursing his fate. He rather enjoys his life to the fullest by making a weekly pilgrimage to watch the football match.

Q. “Sophie was a dreamer”. The lesson ‘Going Places’ reminds us that mere dreams will not help us to accomplish anything. What qualities, do you think, would help Sophie to realise her dreams?

Ans. Sophie needs to be practical and should be aware of the realities of life. She should be simple and down to earth and should know her limitations that she belongs to a lower middle class family. Initially she would face many difficulties because of her poor financial condition, but after she started working, she should save her earnings and try to improve her education so that she could take up better jobs. This requires her character to be determined and hard-working, instead of being just a daydreamer like she is now. Gradually she can raise her status to the level when she would be able to attract successful people like Danny.

Q. It is not unusual for a lower middle class girl to dream big. How unrealistic were Sophie’s dream? Or It is normal for adolescents to fantasize and indulge in hero worship. How far is it true of Sophie?

Ans. Sophie was an adolescent girl who always An lived in a make-believe world of her own she always had the unrealistic expectation that she would have a successful career as a boutique owner, store manager, actress or even a fashion-designer. This was totally unrealistic, as she was from a working class family and would have to work in the local biscuit factory after passing out from school. Similarly, she unrealistically imagined that a famous footballer like Danny Casey would date her. She even went to the extent of waiting beside the canal for him. After he did not turn up, she realised that this was only her dream and Danny would never date her. Even then, she is lost in her dream world, becoming sad that Danny did not come. This shows how unrealistic were her dreams.

Q. Every teenager has a hero/heroin to admire. So many times they become role models for them. What is wrong if Sophie fantasises about Danny Casey and is ambitious in life?

Ans. Sophie was a girl having unrealistic dreams. She felt that she would become either a boutique owner, shop manager, actress or fashion-designer, though her friend Jansie realised that with their background and education, they would just become workers in a biscuit-factory. Like every young girl, Sophie also had in her fancies a strong feeling of knowing the unknown, seeing the unseen and even dating famous people like Danny Casey. So she visited the perfect place for lovers and sat on the solitary wooden bench under the tree. She waited for her lover coming out of the shadows but there was no sign of him. She became burdened with sadness. This may lead to depression among teenagers, as their life’s ambitions are not fulfilled. Thus, such fantasies are not good for her to develop into a mature adult.

Q. Teachers always advise their students to dream big. Yet, the same teachers in your classrooms find fault with Sophie when she dreams. What is wrong with Sophie’s dreams?

Ans. It is good to dream but one needs to be practical too. Sophie belongs to a mediocre family she aspires to own a boutique, though she has no means or money to fulfil her dreams. After school she is likely to work in a biscuit factory. Her dreams are unrealistic. She loves to indulge herself without even thinking of how to achieve it. In her heart of hearts, she knows that her dreams have little possibility of coming true and are only a product of adult fantasising. She also dream dates Danny Casey, an Irish football player. She gets so pulled into her date story told to her brother Geoff that she was supposed to meet Danny. Irrespective of all this Sophie fantasises about her hero, unperturbed. Dreaming within limits is good. Unless one is impossibly ambitious, hardworking, and have loads of patience and perseverance, such dreams are best kept under lock and key unless one likes to be disappointed.

Q. It is natural for teenagers to have unrealistic dreams. What would you say are the benefits and disadvantages of such fantasising? Elaborate it with references of “Going Places”.

Ans. No doubt the teenagers have ideals. They have no experience of the world. They dream of doing things that the adults would never dream of doing. Dreaming is essential and useful. It Was because of having dreams that great inventions and discoveries were made. Joan of Arc was a young girl. She dreamed and heard voices. She felt they were telling her to do the things that looked impossible to achieve. Because of her dreams, she drove away the British from France. Those who only dream and do nothing become lazy and idle. They are impractical in life. Our dreams can help us. But they should be practical and we ought to try to realise them. Sophie is a daydreamer. She can imagine things and her imagination runs wild. She had watched Danny Casey. He is her hero. She is always dreaming about him. She begins to think of meeting him. She is so engrossed in her dreams that she herself is convinced that she actually did meet him and he had promised to meet her again. She goes to meet him on the bank of a canal. There she waits for him. He does not come. She is disappointed. But all this goes on in her mind all the time. She pictures him meeting her in the arcade once again.

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