When I was a kid, there was this blockbuster film called ‘It’s a mad, mad, mad world.’ Now, that I’ve grown on… I’ve realized it’s even more so now.
The world is quite mad.
What with Hillary who was winning and then she lost. Then Trumps won, but he and his people are still wondering what happened. US, and rest of the world is still wondering what to do now. Here, in Pakistan, I keep hearing people doing suicide killings by huge numbers in different parts of Pakistan. On top of it Pakistan gets called a terrorist state. Here, people die in hundreds due to it. Believe me, we are the greatest victims!
Across the world, whereas Seattle had highest rainfall in October, here in Islamabad, the rain hasn’t come. A real dry spell here now. Everything is looking dusty and dirty. The same trees I used to swoon over, are no longer as lovely as they were. Even the cute little lakes in F-9 Park have almost disappeared into slushy muddy pools. There is dust on the trees and everything. The sky has disappeared, there is just a haze in its place. The mountains too have disappeared though they are there, near my home. – Just saw a vague outline a few times only.
I felt so good two days ago, I almost jogged. I was panting away, which made me realize how much dust I’m inhaling. “Why not put on a mask while walking?”, my daughter said, “For God’s sake stop being like those weird people who keep talking about the US when they come back to Pakistan.” Yes, we always made fun of such people. How they talk as if they haven’t lived all their lives in this country! Ok, I better get used to inhaling this dust again.
There are things here, you can’t find there in the US. Ever since I’ve returned, I’ve been after my family to go and have Haji’s chappal kebabs. No one was ready for it. Fine! So, today on way back, from a grueling visit to the ETO office, I felt what the heck. I sat alone in my car and had my hot chappal kebab with fresh hot naan. There were just men nearby having their own meals. So what? The most they would think is “She’s mad!” So what? Here, everyone comes in groups for meals. The concept of eating alone is alian. Ok, so I was an alian satiating my taste buds. Actually, I was happy.
I had so much to celebrate. Felt like indulging myself.
After five years my previous car problem was finally solved. It’s such a long story that I don’t even want to tell you. Though there is so much suspense, thrills and drama in it. But I’m finally DONE with it. Just a couple of hours back I was almost in tears. In fact I was….
Why is it that when people are mean and nasty, I’m ok, (I’ve seen a lot of it, in last few years). Yes, angry but fine. But when a gentleman is kind to me, then the tears start spilling out. In fact … I cry! Sniff sniff! I hid it pretending it’s a cold … achooo!
“Are you crying? Or you have a cold?” Asked Faizan. Who had bought my car. He was going through the works in the ETO office, Islamabad, because I had gone through the works, because my husband died almost five years ago. “Umm, yes, to both.” I said with a smile. “It was the sub-inspector’s kindness that made me cry.” Yes, we were still wondering how we have finally been declared ‘through’ with all the formalities. One guy Mustafa had been nasty, by refusing to help. Asked me to go and get attested copies from all contestants. When I had showed him the paper in my hand with court orders with each one’s signature that the car was mine.
Had my husband been living, none of this would have happened. He took such great care of me. He would be there to save me whenever I was in any soup. Once, he was ready to file a case against a man, due to whom I had to stand in the hot weather for about an hour….
Yes, I was upset.
So, the chappal kebab was the ‘treatment’ and treat for my soul!
Sigh! Stay free of intrigue, manipulation and criminality, and dust. Here it is a madder, madder, madder world.
Stay blessed in spite of it all!