Using a public telephone may well be one of the minor irritations of life, demanding patience, determination and a strong possibility of failure, together on occasion with considerable unpopularity.
The hopeful caller (shall we call him George?) waits till six o’clock in the evening to take advantage of the so-called “cheap rates” for a long-distance call. The telephone box, with two broken panes of glass in the side, stands at the junction of two main roads with buses, lorries and cars roaring past. It is pouring with rain as George joins a queue of four depressed-looking people. Time passes slowly and seems to come to a standstill while the person immediately before George carries on an endless conversation, pausing only to insert another coin every minute or so.
Eventually the receiver is replaced and the caller leaves the box. George enters and picks up one of the directories inside, only to discover that someone unknown has torn out the very page he needs. Nothing for it but to dial directory Enquiries, wait patiently for a reply down the number given.
At last George can go ahead with his call. Just as he is starting to dial, however, the door opens and an unpleasant-looking face peers in with the demand, “Can’t you hurry up?” Ignoring such barbarity, George continues to dial and his unwanted companion withdraws. At last he hears the burr-burr of the ringing tone, immediately followed by rapid pips demanding his money, but he is now so upset that he knocks down the coins he has placed ready on the top of the box. Having at last located them, he dials again: the pips are repeated and he hastily inserts the coins. A cold voice informs him, “Grand Hotel, Chalfont Wells.” “
I’ve an urgent message for a Mr. Smith who is a guest in your hotel. Could you put me through to him? I’m afraid I don’t know his room number.” The response appears less than enthusiastic and a long long silence follows. George inserts more coins. Then the voice informs him, “I’ve been trying to locate Mr. Smith but the hall porter reports having seen him leave about a minute ago.”
Breathing heavily, George replaces the receiver, just as the knocking on the door starts again.
21.The main intention of the passage is to provide____.
A) instructions about how to use a public call box
B) advice about how to deal with public telephone problems
C) criticism of the efficiency of telephone system
D) an account of possible annoyances in using a public telephone
22.Which of the following calls are you unlikely to make at the “cheaprate” referred to?
A) To discuss your account in a bank in Scotland.
B) To have a chat with an elderly relation.
C) To ask about a friend in hospital who has just had an operation.
D) To express Christmas greetings to cousins in Australia.
23.George can at least be thankful that ____.
A) the call box is in a convenient position
B) the telephone itself is working
C) he can use the directory in the box to find the number
D) he is able to give his message to the hotel receptionist
24.Why does George have to dial a second time?
A) He hasn’t remembered to put the money in the box. B) He hasn’t got enough money with him.
C) He has got to find the money to put in the box. D) He can’t find the number he wants in the directory.
25.What are George’s feelings when he completes his call?
A) He has some difficulty in controlling his annoyance.
B) He is very disappointed at missing his friends.
C) He is annoyed with himself for being so stupid.
D) He is depressed at the thought of having to try again to get through.