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  • Saara Banwat

The Influence and the Influenced

It was one of those days where the sun was scorching bright, yet a slight breeze was blowing. The different periods seemed to fly through. I was thoroughly relishing talking to friends and teachers. Soon enough, the highly awaited lunch break arrived. My friends and I rushed to the canteen (of course we did, it was Friday!). We sat down at one of those steel tables. While devouring the delicious food, we talked about everything from an upcoming assignment to a famous singer's new song. The loud chattering all around us was only encouraging. As soon as we had finished, we ran to the ground outside. Hardly had we reached the jungle gym when we resumed our frivolous conversation. The hands of the clock seemed to go rather quickly. We had heard the bell, indicating that our mirthful time had to come to an end. I was just about to leave when one of my friends stopped me. Five minutes more wouldn't hurt, would it? I knew it was fundamentally wrong, but we were having too much fun, and it would be impertinent to dismiss her if I still wanted to be friends with them. So ignoring my conscience, I stayed there for five minutes and then five after that, and five after that.


When we did reach the class, the period was almost over. The teacher was undoubtedly disappointed. She had us write an apology letter. Before that, I hadn't ever written an apology letter. I had seen classmates writing such letters every week.


Yet, I felt this intense guilt that I had let everyone down. It took me months to regain the trust of my teachers and my parents. In retrospect, many things could have been different had I done the right thing. It did teach me an important lesson, to listen to my conscience.


A positive influence could change someone's entire life for the better. Except the flip side could be pernicious. Being aware of such influences may be for the best.

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