Britain has in recent years been described as a "leisure society". This is because there is a great variety of leisure pursuits. Young people generally go out on Friday or Saturday nights to a disco, to a concert or to a pub. In recent years going out for a meal or bringing a takeaway meal have become popular too.
During the last years there is a great increase in keeping fit and staying healthy. A lot of teens started running, jogging and going to different fitness clubs in their spare time. Aerobics classes and fitness clubs opened in every town, and the number of recreation centres greatly increased. Indoor pools, with their wave-making machines, water slides and tropical vegetation, have become very popular. And the same is in Russia.
A lot of teens go in for different kinds of sports. Sport helps them to feel as fit as a fiddle. In both countries there are special programmes for problem teenagers such as a high-risk activity, for example they are taught to jump out of aeroplanes. But despite the increase in the number of teens participating in sports, the majority of young people still prefer to be spectators. They prefer to be couch potatoes. Watching sports on TV is a popular leisure activity, as is going to football matches on Saturday. Cinemas have been redesigned with four or more screens, each showing a different film at the same time, and a lot of teens like going to the cinemas too.
A young generation is fond of communication. There are many available methods of communication nowadays, and the most popular one is a computer. A lot of teenagers spend plenty of time working on the computers. The Internet seems really a good fun. You may send e-mail to friends from different countries and get their answers at once. You even may talk to them. It is easy and quick. A lot of teenagers have mobile telephones so they can always be contacted if they keep their telephone switched on at any time of the day or night.
A lot of teenagers in both countries are crazy about animals. They race them, train them and breed them. They like to hear stories about them on television programmes and they like reading books about them. Many teens have a pet animal. It could be a dog, a cat, a goldfish, a bird or a small animal like a hamster. Looking after and being kind to their pets is very important for teens. Why are the teens so interested in animals? Perhaps it's because they are rather shy in their heart of hearts. One of my friends says: "I like my dog, because she never thinks I'm silly."
There are plenty of other kinds of activities such as travelling, visiting historic places, baby-sitting, delivering newspapers, putting together jigsaw puzzles, reading, going to different museums, skateboarding, going fishing, hitchhiking, doing the shopping, helping people in need, joining a computer club and others. We can say, "So many teens, so many kinds of activities."
Well, some words about me. I am fifteen and I am a computer addict. I am fond of communication with other teens. That's why I have a lot of friends in my country and other ones. We send messages from one computer to another one using e-mail, we have online conversations. I am a member of a computer club and I spend a lot of time there. Of course, it's rather expensive but my parents understand me and give me enough money to pay for my computer club. And I think that my hobby will be useful in my future profession. Besides I spend my free time in a sports club. I go in for kung fu. Recently films about kung fu have become very popular in Russia. This fighting itself is a great art, the result of many years of hard work and self-discipline. The man who made kung fu films famous was Bruce Lee. He used fists, elbows, feet (never weapons) and moved as fast as lightning. I am rather good at kung fu now, but I never use my skills to hurt anybody, unless it is absolutely necessary. Now people know what kung fu is, and I think it may become a sport of the future because it brings up your personality, will and nobility.