CPE :: Lesson 13



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Reading and writing

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... completado las 40 lecciones y el test parcial que componen este curso.


... alcanzado los 90 días como estudiante registrado.



ACTIVITY 59: You are going to read a magazine article about a musician. For questions 1-5, choose the answer (A, B, C or D) which you think best fits according to the text. Then check the correct answers.


On 27 January 1950 I was due at the Albert Hall, London, where Sir Adrian Boult was to conduct a programme including the Elgar and the Mendelssohn Violin Concerti.

Diana and I left New York on the evening of the twenty-fifth, with ample time, as we presumed, to keep our appointment. With everyone secure in his safety belt, the plane shot down the runway, then halted with a tremendous screeching of brakes just short of takeoff. This was twice repeated before the shaken passengers were unloaded and told to return to the airport in the morning.

Next day we set off for England again. To begin with, so thick was New York traffic that we almost missed the plane, which might have saved everyone a great deal of trouble. Disaster avoided, we took off at eleven-thirty, and shortly afterwards the pilot made his rounds. Wanting to reassure Diana, I stopped him and suggested that the untoward incidents of the day before hadn't been too serious. In that wonderful calm bluff English way, he answered, 'Airplane engines, you see, are made up of thousands of individual parts, and it is quite impossible to tell when any one of them may cease to function'; with which Job's comfort he passed on. A short while later one of those many parts did indeed cease to function: oil began blowing over the wings, and back we went to Idlewild Airport, as it then was. At the third try, later that afternoon, we succeeded in crossing the Atlantic, making one stop to refuel in Newfoundland and another at Shannon in the Irish Republic, for one flew from landfall to landfall in those days.
Here the English weather blocked further progress: fog had closed London Airport. It was about 6:30 a.m. local time when we arrived at Shannon, too early to despair of reaching our destination. We telephoned my agent, Harold Holt, and I borrowed an airport office to practise in. However, as the hours passed and the London fog failed to lift, I grew anxious enough to try to charter from Aer Lingus a plane small enough to land in conditions which our big Stratocruiser could not cope with. For some reason Aer Lingus was not allowed to rescue us, so after more endless hours, we took off in the transatlantic plane, first at three forty-five - when the radio was found to be out of order and we had to turn back, then, finally, at four-fifteen. All hopes of rehearsing had long been abandoned, but the concert itself still seemed safe. The fog had yet a couple of tricks up its sleeve, however. After circling over Heathrow a few times in a vain attempt to find a break in the blanket below him, the pilot landed at Manston on the east coast. Diana and I were delivered to the earth through the luggage shaft in the plane's belly, hustled through customs at a trot and thrust into a waiting car, which roared off the airfield with most gratifying drama. One mile farther on, the gentle fog of the countryside rolled toward us in thick, soft, totally opaque clouds, and we crawled the rest of the way at hardly more than walking speed, Diana shivering in the unheated car.
We were of course late.



After the first attempts to take off, the author and his wife were asked to come back on...


A.    25th January.
B.    26th January.
C.    27th January.
  28th January.


The pilot's remarks, shortly after taking off from New York...


A.    proved quite inaccurate.
B.    led to their returning to Idlewild.
C.    referred to their previous disastrous flight.
  were not calculated to ease Diana's distress.


When they arrived in Ireland at 6.30, the author and his wife...


A.    were still hoping to reach London in time to rehearse.
B.    chartered a small plane which could land in fog.
C.    were late for their connecting flight.
  were feeling absolutely desperate.


What happened when they finally landed at Manston?


A.    They were held up going through Customs.
B.    The fog immediately came down thicker than ever.
C.    They were given special treatment.
  Their car developed an engine fault.


It is evident from the passage that the author was...


A.    a rich man taking his wife to see a special concert at the Albert Hall.
B.    a conductor who had to be in London to give a concert.
C.    a solo violinist going to play in a concert in London.
  an American musical agent who had an appointment with Sir Adrian Boult.


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