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Describe a friend of your family you remember from your childhood

IELTS Cue Card Question 29 With Model Answer:

Describe a friend of your family you remember from your childhood.

You should say:
  • who the person was
  • how your family knew this person
  • how often this person visited your family
and explain why you remember this person.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you're going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]

Model Answer 1:
I had to grow up in a large family with my parents and their intimate relatives living an entire apartment block in New York. My father had a friend who was like a family friend in my family and I was the dearest one for him in my childhood. He used to visit our house frequently.

John Richardson, the man with long black hair and a tall figure is the family friend of my family. He had long hairs and he loved to keep the hairs long, and sometimes made a ponytail with a rubber band, and lived near of our apartment located in a corner of Manhattan in New York City. He was highly welcomed when he arrived at our home and even my grandpa also admired him in his absence if he needed to provide an example of intelligence. Mr John Richardson was the man whom every one of my family sought for support during their distress, sometimes I also had to take his support for my academic purposes, and he was truly an intelligent, smart and attractive person I have ever seen with an adventure seeker look. His smartness was a divine gift, I guess.

I do not have the exact idea how he was related to our family as after my birth I have seen him meeting the people in our house regularly. Therefore, I tried to discover the fact and finally came to know this that uncle John’s father was my grandpa’s intimate friend and their friendship started when the two were at school in their childhood in Minnesota. Uncle John’s father lived the next house to my grandpa’s house there. Thus, two of the kids of the two families (my father and Uncle John) started close interactions together. Gradually they grew matured, shifted in New York, got married, started their family, and have their own kids. Interestingly they formed a deep sense of friendship from their childhood and they are maintaining the relationship very well. As a result, the older boy John Richardson of Roland Nathan becomes the most intimate friend of Jack Rozario (my father), the older son of Abel Rozario. It is the brief history of his being intimate with my family.

Uncle John uncle was a businessman and has engaged himself in the same activities for long years. The most interesting thing about Uncle John is that he does not have a schedule to visit our home. He has become like a family member of our family who lives the next door from us. Moreover, whenever someone of my family needs his help or suggestion, s/ he informs him about the issue over the telephone and then he comes at the same day or night with an attractive solution. If he needs a secret meeting with my father over any of his internal issues, he comes at midnight, sits at the living room talks as long as they need and goes away silently without disturbing anyone. I have counted that he visits our house over 15 times in a week in an average.

Now the time has changed and I have been matured while my parents are turning older gradually. All of their hairs have turned grey with the advancement of age and it is similar to Uncle John. In my 30s, I still remember Uncle John most for his extraordinary intelligence, kindness and simple ways of living. He used to come to our house mostly to resolve the issues we could not mitigate. But I was the dearest thing for him in the entire house and he never forgot to bring something for me, especially chocolates and cookies each of the time he arrived at the house. As he had no kids, I was like his own kid to him. However, the solutions he provided were simple and everyone was happy with the solutions. Even I also had to contact him for one of my personal issues in my school life (I had a bad figure in math during my 9th grade) and he directed me a way that saved me from being lectured badly from my parents.

Sample Answer 2: 
Alia Nur is my mother’s best friend and I am familiar with her since my birth. She is one of the most familiar individuals whom I have been observing since my childhood at the family. She has turned like a family member as well.

Aunt Alia Nur is the woman of around 40 and she has three kids. She loves to meet people and share her feelings and emotions with them. But she is also a woman of great heart and comes forward in the distress of her surroundings. During my birth, she was the leading individual who did everything for my mum. She is a teacher in her profession and teaches history in a local school.

As far I came to know about aunt Alia that she was my mother’s school friend. The friendship between my mother and her grew up long ago and they have been maintaining it even today. Whenever it is any occasion or festival in Malaysia, my mum sends gifts for her and at the same time, she also sends gifts and other necessary stuff for my family. In fact, she has become one of the most prominent members of my family that my parents took her recommendations even before taking any minor decisions. On the other side, she also invites us at her residence frequently to attend in her family functions. Her husband is also an amicable person and is nice to us like her.

My mother keeps regular contact with aunt Alia. In fact, she (aunt Alia) visits our residence at least twice in a day. When she sets out for her school, she does not miss the chance to have a cup of tea with my mum and in the evening, after her return from the school, she comes to share the events of the day with mum. My mum, being a traditional housewife, is not connected with the outer world and aunt Alia is probably the only source for her to get to know the world. Both of the friends share a large number of things and they enjoy a lot. I have seen that both of them share a very strong bond between them and the relation is unbreakable.

I remember her even today as she is still keeping contacts with us. Now she is in the USA with her family but the bond with her is still the same. When she left the country, it was really a pathetic event for us all. It appeared that we are losing the dearest one of our family. But the geographical distance has not separated her from us rather the bond is strengthening gradually. Now, mum and aunt Alia communicates using the social networking sites and exchange their views and opinions. I, with my sisters also take part in the communication and make lots of fun. Now, all of my family members are eagerly waiting for their annual visit to the country.

Part 3 - Detail discussion / Two-way discussion:


Q. What do you think makes someone a good friend to a whole family?
A. Friendship is the bonding between people who are not related by blood. But friendship is an eternal bondage and been being practised from time immemorial. To be a good friend, one needs to possess some specific and special qualities and if someone tries to be a family friend, they need to demonstrate the qualities like honesty, sincerity, generosity, respecting others’ feelings etc. The most important thing is that the person should be well behaved and mannered and have to adjust to the people of all classes in the society. To be the friend of a whole family, one has to observe the attitudes and behaviours of the family members and has to reflect the behaviours and attitudes accordingly.

Q. Do you think we meet different kinds of friends at different stages of our lives? In what ways are these types of friend different?
A. Life has different stages and we have to meet different people in the stages we experience. But all the people we meet are not the same always. It is quite natural to be different. All the people do not belong to the same class or category and their backgrounds are different. So, it is wise not to expect the same behaviour from all the people. For instance, when we are at school in a particular locality, we meet with kids having almost the similar background of us. When we are at college or university goers, we meet different sorts of people who came from a diversified background. Moreover, when we are at work, the scenario is different. The people are different in terms of nature, behaviour and attitudes. The senses for common use are not the same for all of them.

Q. How easy is it to make friends with people from a different age group?
A. Usually, friendship is built on the early days of life and the range of making friends is almost closed when the academic learning is finished. But friendship could also be built in workplaces too if there are suitable minds. But most of the times friendship could not be made after the teenage but it may happen that you have a nice and friendly relation with the other people but the friendly relationship never refers that they are your friends. It is very easy for the young people to make friends in their early days but it is difficult for the adults to make a friendship with the people of their similar age.

Influence of friends:

Q. Do you think it is possible to be friends with someone if you never meet them in person?
A. This is advanced age and many of our real-life tasks are done virtually and using few mouse clicks. To be a friend, one does not need to be physically present with the other part to make a friendship. Using different social communication platforms, we could easily make a friendship with the other people living in different parts of the world. They do not need to meet every day in person to share their feelings and emotions. Rather they are communicating easily using the social communication platform features like chatting or messaging, sharing their pictures etc. As a result, the necessity of meeting physically every day or after a specific period appears to be less important.

Q. Is this real friendship?
A. Real friendship is the thing that is not available everywhere. A real friend is a friend who is always with friends regardless the situations being good or bad. Now a day the number of real friends has been limited. The friend who will be with you in your sufferings is your real friend. It may happen that a friend of your social networking site has appeared during your stressful moments to support you then the friend should be considered as a real one. It also happens that the people with whom you have grown up leaves you in your danger, they are not real. So, the issue of real friendship is similar to the theory of relativity.

Q. What kind of influence can friends have on our lives?
A. Friends are the part and parcel of our lives. We cannot actually do without them in different situations of our life. We need their support and sometimes we support them in their needs. Sometimes people are highly influenced by the friends. They adopt different attitudes and behaviours regardless of the quality of their friends and exercise in their everyday life. Moreover, a friend owns the ability to show the way to prosperity to the other friends. Both the positive and negative impacts could be imposed by the friends and it is the duty of us to pick the right one to march ahead in our life.

Q. How important would you say it is to have friends from different cultures?
A. Friends from different cultures are invaluable wealth for us. It is impossible for an outsider to learn about any specific ethnic group or about their culture unless the group or community allows (in fact achieving such permission is one of the daunting and toughest tasks). So, if someone has a friend from different cultures, it becomes easier to know about the rules and regulations of the culture. People usually trust their friends much. If you ask your friend about the norms and trends of their societies based on your usual curiosity, s/ he will describe the issues without any hesitation as you are a friend of him or her. But it is almost impossible for a stranger to collect the information so easily.

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