Yesterday we searched for houses in Connecticut for my daughter Nola. It is picturous, but there is a flaw. New houses are hardly built, and only old ones are available.  The ones we looked at, shown by a realtor were very old and depressing. Another strange thing was the one, and only bathroom which existed in them was next to the kitchen. Highly disappointing. 

The second last one we saw didn’t have central cooling. It was on first floor, and haphazard in design. It was warm inside, and I soon started perspiring. The young ones, and I stayed for a while on the balcony. Seeing the fire escape stairs, we went down to sit on a bench under the shade of a tree. We waited outside for Nola. It was more pleasant outside than inside the house.

This time my daughter intends to stay back. Obviously she has to rent/buy a house. Then she will have to consider schools for the two young ones. She has asked me to leave Houston to live with her. At the moment I refused. My son is alone, and he has yet to come to terms with his impending divorce. He grieves about the separation from his children. When the children come for a day, he lights up from the inside.
As the day ends he gets depressed. I can only hope and pray for him.

His heart thrown away trampled underfoot

What do you say to years lost

Images of past life crash in his mind

He laments for his love aside tossed

Why, why, why? Is the question he asks





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Yesterday I had a long wait at JFK airport. I had arrived earlier from Houston. My daughter was coming via Chicago from Iowa. We were to meet there, so that she didn’t have to drive again to fetch me.

I randomly observed people, as I sat in the baggage area. Some had travelled with their dogs. One young couple had a miniature pooch– brown with black patches. He escaped from his mistress, and ran straight at me. He was unbelievingly small with pointy ears, and bulgy eyes. As I got ready to give a shriek, he skidded to a stop, and changed his direction. His mistress ran after him in hot pursuit.

A night earlier I was walking outside the apartment I live with my son. I had come out to dispose our garbage, and after that decided to take a walk. A man with a dog had come to throw his garbage too.  He had several bags. Meanwhile his dog got another idea when he saw me walking there. He excitedly started barking at me, trying to get closer to me, and ready to give me a bite. He wasn’t a miniature, but was a ferocious little thing. I shrieked involuntarily, and waved my hands at him to keep myself from being bitten. 

His owner shouted at him to stop his misbehavior, but  he kept nipping at my ankles. I moved backwards. He took umbrage at his owner from stopping him from having his fun. Clearly in a huff he ran off. His owner dropped his garbage, and ran after him. 

I saw them returning. To avoid them I continued my walk in the opposite direction. After waiting for several minutes, I turned to walk back home.




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Fifty Years

When my children were young, one huge worry was— Will I  live till I am fifty? It haunted me. No one knows what is in store for them. I could only hope and pray. With the early death of my own mother, I didn’t want my own children growing motherless. To me it was the biggest calamity which could happen in a child’s life.

Most women in my family had died young. My aunts, maternal grandmother, mother — they didn’t survive. Thanks to God, I hanged on despite the many operations in my life.

After fifty I look back at life. It is a bonus.




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Today the topic for the daily prompt is moon. Just days earlier I bought a small gift for my daughter Nola to give her, when we meet Insha’Allah. When the on button is pressed the moon and stars light up. 

Here is a picture.




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Bed Ghost

There was definitely something in the room. What was it? I really don’t know. I was scared when I was sleeping alone. Normally when my (late) husband R was sleeping next to me, I wouldn’t get scared. When he wasn’t there, I would lie awake. I would recite the Ayat-ul-kursi  from the Quran to drive away the scary ghost moving our king size bed.

R had given it a funny name. I have totally forgotten the name. R would smirk at me at breakfast time and ask, “Did it trouble you last night?” I would gave him a glare, because it was all his fault in abandoning, and leaving me alone in our room. 

R was a light sleeper, and if disturbed during sleep, and he got woken up, he wouldn’t let me sleep. On the nights I watched a late night show, or a movie on tv, he would go and sleep in the guest room so that his sleep wasn’t disturbed.

The ghost was in our downstairs bedroom. With downsizing my furniture in the lower portion of our home, I sold off the bed, and moved upstairs after R’s death. I have never mentioned the ghost to my tenent downstairs. She hasn’t said anything, so maybe the ghost went elsewhere. Another reason it may have moved with the bed, and is terrorizing someone else.




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Going on a journey, specially air travel, and airports breaks me into a cold sweat. Days before I stop sleeping, fearing as if I am on a marathon. I dislike packing too. I never know what to carry with me. Take last year trips to Boston, Roanoke and Peshawar, I wasn’t equipped well for the weather’s vagaries.

I can never make up my mind. Should I take summer clothes only? Should I pack a sweater or two, or maybe a shawl? Another worrisome thought? Whatever I am carrying –will it suffice? Surely I won’t need anything at all. I try to give myself a mental shake, but it doesn’t help.

This year journeys are rushing towards me. My carry on, and duffel bag are out of the closet. They watch my antics at packing gleefully. They don’t gather how agonizing it’s for me to make decisions regarding what to take along. 

I envy those light travelers who only have a backpack, or a small carry on. Compared to them, I struggle with my carry on, a shoulder bag and suitcases. My hair become dis arrayed, and a harried expression permanently settles on my face. I question myself on my sanity. Why do I put myself through this misery of traveling when I don’t like it at all?

The answer is: sometimes it’s a necessity. At other times — the thought that my daughter will think of me as an uncaring mother, if I don’t go and see her.

On my last year journey to Peshawar, Pakistan, I carried too many clothes with me. I should have gone without them. My wardrobe and suitcases back home were full of them. My memory had dimmed about my clothes after two and a half years gap of being here.

The result was that while coming back I had to leave them behind because of my baggage allowance.




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