Category Archives: Life

With Sweetness

A week before on a flight coming back to Houston, I discovered a whole new way how people can be a nuisance tempered with sweetness. A woman forced opened the door of the cramped restroom. I wonder how she did it while it was bolted from the inside. I hastily bolted the door again. She kept saying, “Sweetie! Are you alright?

She kept calling me again, and again, all the while saying words dripping with sugar. When I came out she said, “ Honey are you okay? I have been so worried about you!” I looked at her amazed at her duplicity, (harassing me while I was inside) not knowing what to say except muttering “I’m okay”.

The Afghans

For years I wanted to make an afghan. I realized my dream this year. Masha’Allah! I made two of them.

The first one
The second one

More than twenty years ago, I chose a design from Needlework and Craft. I bought the necessary wool. It was in cream color. The main work was in square shape. I don’t remember how many squares were needed. The flowers on them were to be embroidered after finishing the squares. I did crochet about two of them. After that I don’t remember why I stopped working on the afghan, and where all that wool went.

This year my eyes felled upon a colorful afghan designed by red heart.com All the colors were calling to me, and I couldn’t resist. I wish I had waited to buy those colors in the original one. I started with what I had at home.

Nola (daughter) first question on phone is what you have been doing ? I told her with the result that she claimed first dibs on it. When she came to visit, I gave it to her.

Now (once started) I would Insha’Allah like to make another two for guests use. I have not started. This time I will gather the wool first after I decide on a pattern. Let’s see when I make a start. At the moment there is hardly any time to while it away with crocheting.

My Youngest Grandchild

Maryam

Today I scolded my granddaughter (ten months old) by calling her gunda baccha. It means dirty child in Urdu. She has the bad habit of throwing whatever she is eating on the floor. Then she tries to get out of her baby chair by squirming first, and then crying. Once she is on the floor, she scoots herself to the fallen food, and eats it. It must have gathered something from the floor to make it more appetizing.

I’m like forever cleaning the area, so that whatever she eats from the floor won’t make her sick. Yesterday we had to eat out, because it was lunch time. We had a bunch of errands to run beside her mother getting a booster for her Covid shot. We sat outside, and the dear child wanted to be on the floor, so that she could eat all the appealing dirt secretly signaling to her to get down. Though she didn’t get her heart wish.

We have to block her way onwards to the stairs. At the upper end of the stairs, Son has installed a gate, but at the lower end the stairs are too wide, there is no way for a gate to be added. We put different obstacles to block the way. Maryam’s favorite pastime is to head towards the stairs, and try to climb them. We try to be vigilant, but one day she climbed them. Thank God she didn’t fall down.

When she doesn’t want to interact with you, she won’t even look at you, but if you are sitting at the dining table, and eating something, she climbs up into your lap, and demands to be fed. She eats with all of us. Usually I’m the last one to join, but as soon as she sees me, she gets down from her parents’ lap, and clamors to be held by me.

One evening I was standing by my chair, she crawled to my side, and held on to my legs. I picked her up, and continued to talk to her parents without sitting down to eat my food. She waited for like ten minutes, and then bursts into tears. Oh God! I realized she wanted to eat from my plate. I prefer her to sit in her baby chair, not in my lap, as it’s easier to feed her. She thinks her grandma must be eating something different from her parents, so she must sample whatever I have. Once satisfied, she decides to climb down, and crawls away.

If the door of my room is closed, she tries to call me to open the door. If I don’t answer, she keeps a vigil, and patiently wait outside. She doesn’t talk yet except for the words Baba (her father), Ma (her mother), and Da (me).

Her childhood is the sweetest time for us to enjoy. Once children grow up they turn into aliens.

A Light Needed

This is Masha’Allah our third year in our present home. The first time I glimpsed the house on the pages sent by the realtor, I fell in love with it. I was a bit apprehensive before seeing the house that it may not look as good as in the pictures. It had happened to me in reality.

This was back in 2013. I was looking for a small apartment to live on my own, away from Son and his wife (his ex now). The realtor showed me one. It looked gorgeous in pictures. It turned out to be completely different, and extremely dirty. It required a fortune to renovate, which was beyond my means.

Coming to the story of our present home, it wasn’t a total disappointment. The outside was as it looked in pictures. There were certain drawbacks, but nothing which couldn’t be fixed. One such minor thing was the patio light in the backyard.

I asked Son, time and again —— please change the light.

You can think that in two years time that an itsy bitsy problem must have ceased to exist. An empathetic NO. It’s still there. Alas! Son, and I don’t look at things the same way. What I need is a simple light which can light up the backyard with a touch of a button. Son bought a sensor light which didn’t light up when needed. For a few seconds it came on, and then you kept waving at it, danced before it, did acrobats, it refused to come on.

My bedroom windows faces the backyard. At night I could see the light was on most of the time. Probably it came on for a mosquito to see its’ way, or for a snail crawling on the patio, or for the wind blowing. For us it wouldn’t light up.

A day, or so earlier Son gave me the good news that he had installed a new light. Last night I checked it. What a bummer! This new one had a camera too. Whilst it blinked furiously at me in the dark there wasn’t any light I could see switching on.

I can resign myself for another wait of two years.

Farewell

I’m a sucker for a British voice. Why? I don’t know. I have always loved the way Britishers speak. Somehow it’s music to me.

The Queen’s death has brought back memories of Diana. I cried the whole day, when she died. I was staying at that time with daughter in Cleveland, Ohio. Her death was unbelievable, probably because it was so tragic, and sudden. The sad face of twelve years old Prince Harry haunts me, and still brings tears to my eyes.

I can never reconcile myself to Camilla being the queen. She usurped the place where Diana should have been. I wish the Queen had brought Charles to heel. She should have intervened on Diana’s behalf, and threatened him that he won’t be king. The Queen, and the Queen Mother were indifferent to Diana’s plight.

Queen Elizabeth has been the face of Great Britain for a long time. I can understand her peoples’ grief for her. I never thought that she will be gone, thinking she might live to a hundred. A death is always a sad occurrence, but that’s the way we all have to go.

Yaum ul Arafah

Yaum means Day. Today is Yaum ul Arafah. It’s the ninth day of Zil Haj (according to the Lunar Calendar). The day after is Eid ul Adha, a major Islamic holiday. It’s the second day of Haj (the pilgrimage to Mecca which is binding on all Muslims who have the means to do so).

Fasting on this day is an expiation for two years.

Today is a day of Mercy from Allah. Your prayers are answered. Last night I asked Son to tuck away his phone for a day, and concentrate more on prayers, and dua. Son is addicted to his iPhone. It’s a mega tussle to get his attention once he is on his iPhone.

It’s the day on which Islam was perfected for us.

Allah Says in the Quran (Surah Al Maidah 5:3)

The Quran

The Muslim image is distorted before people of other faiths. In the western world the media has painted a horrific view of Muslims. In spite of that more, and more people are reverting to Islam. Reverts used to change their names to Muslim names, but nowadays they keep their previous names. Probably the main reason is that they fear rejection, and hate in the eyes of their friends, family, and at their work places.

I feel saddened that while others are accepting Islam, many people who were born Muslims are not worthy of it. They are only in name Muslims. Their actions bring a bad name to Islam.

A Time to Learn

Today is Fourth of July. A happy day to you.

Son with his wife and baby M has gone to Galveston. They did their level best to take me along. I refused. I have been so many times there, I didn’t feel like going. D in law enjoys fireworks. It doesn’t matter if she has seen them previously. She likes them immensely.

Monday is my day of Tajweed. My teacher, and I connect through Zoom. I have asked my teacher to allow me to watch when she is with the other students. This way I’m constantly revising what I have learnt earlier. Today I wished I wasn’t online. One of the new student was very rude.

We are on camera, when we (the students) are reciting our lessons. This way the teacher see the way we pronounce the words, and she corrects us. The new one didn’t want the camera. She insisted on no camera. The teacher corrected her on a word, to which she said she was going to say the word as she was taught by her previous teacher.

Our teacher tried to explain to her that since her way , and the student’s earlier teacher differed, it would be best if she continued with her previous teacher. The student was adamant that she won’t go back, but she would continue the way she was reciting. It was an ugly confrontation, and I felt terrible watching it.

No one is perfect, and learning never stops. Your life ends, but learning goes on.