Abez sez Assalamualaikum!

Ha Ha! My little brother in the states is reading my blog! Hi sir! I so happy! I therefore dedicate this blog to him. AssalamuAlaikum Zaman!

Well, I have distressing news to relate. You know that one fly trapped in my fly-trap? It escaped. :::drops head into hands and wails. Oh the agony!::: See, the fly got inside. And that’s great, but he was in there long enough to figure a way out. That’s because I forgot to poison him. A friend and anti-fly co-conspirator (Hi Maria!) told me that if you mix a little washing soap/powder in there then the flies will die in ecstasy.

Now, I can’t vouch for the fact that the flies would be ecstatic to be poisoned, but I think the powder would probably kill them. I find dead spiders in the laundry soap all the time actually, which kinda makes me sad. (The enemy of my enemy is my friend, the spiders eat the flies, therefore the spiders and I are buddies.) It’s too dark to go poking about my fly-trap at the moment, so I’ll make the changes in the morning and keep y’all informed of my progress.

My yesterday’s artsy-fartsy impulses manifested themselves not in painting, but in sewing a shirt. I’m wearing it now thank you very much. And, instead of rearranging the furniture, I busted out a hammer, a pencil, two screw drivers and no, I didn’t hurt myself. I repaired the shelf in my bathroom that fell down last week. It was quite an event when it happened actually. Aniraz came down the stairs and informed me that there was broken glass and the slime of mingled facial-maintenance products all over the bathroom, and a safety pin in the toilet. Since our bathroom had been in a *relatively* normal state when we left the house, it was kinda shocking to come home and find it in ruins.

It turns out that the two screws holding the shelf in place had finally given up, and the shelf dropped off the wall and struck the sink with considerable violence. The glass that held our tooth brushes had gone airborne and shattered on the floor three feet away from the sink, and all the safety-pins and straight-pins that we keep for our scarves flew in a roughly north-east direction, landing in the vicinity of the toilet. That’s how one of them ended up sleeping with the fishes, or the alligators, or the roaches, or whichever foul beastie it is that lives in Pakistan‘s sewers.

I, brandishing my trusty knife, tiptoed around the house checking to see if any of the windows were broken or the door left unlocked, or if anything expensive was missing, or if there had been safety pins thrown into any of the other toilets as the burglar’s calling card. We’re not paranoid, actually we’ve had our house burglarized before. Back in the US, we came home one day and there were muddy footprints on the sofa and my mom’s jewelry had been stolen, and lots of important papers torn into bits. I don’t know why the burglars ripped up my birth certificate and social security card, I know only that I had an existential crisis before I got new copies.

The cops came and looked around, taking fingerprints. They came into our room (Aniraz’s and mine) and took it all in: the clothes strewn about the room, the drawers dumped out on the floor, the closet doors open, the books thrown from the shelves and lying open, and said, “So, the burglar did all this?”

I cannot tell a lie. Especially when the truth is more amusing. I suppressed a smile and said, “No sir.“ The room looked exactly the same as we had left it. The cop was slightly repulsed. I don’t blame him, I doubt even the burglars set foot in it, they were probably too grossed out by the mess. I was actually kinda disappointed that they hadn’t carted some of it away. They could’ve saved us the trouble of cleaning up.

But, back to the here and now, the bathroom shelf is restored and I am without mortal injury. I have to teach tomorrow, and have a lot of work to do before then. It’s Sunday again, and have you all memorized the Sunday-Night chant dutifully and in American accents? Yes? Excellent, then we shall recite it. All together now class, (raps desk with ruler and straightens horn-rimmed glasses).

Eeek! Eeek! Eeek!

The beginning of another week!

I have to go back to doing work now, but I will leave you with what I think is one of the most beautiful passages of the Qur’an. It’s from Surah 5, ayah 6. I’ve broken it into lines to make it easier to read.

“O ye whose hearts have been touched by the Divine Hand, when you intend to stand before God for performing your acts of worship, then ablution becomes a duty.

Wash your faces, your hands and the forearms up to the elbows, and with your wet hands wipe over your heads, and then wash your feet to your ankles….

…God does not intend to put you in difficulty, but only to make you sound-headed men of proper discipline and excellent mind, and to set you upon a course of purity of thought and action.

For the actions of men are best interpreters of their thoughts, and He means to make all grace abound in you that you may hopefully actuate yourselves with the feeling of gratitude and gratefulness and lift to Him your inward sight.”

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