Abez sez Assalamualaikum!

I beg a thousand pardons of y’all, for I overbooked my weekend and hadn’t had the time to write an update yet. Friday was English Night, this Saturday was a party, tomorrow is Easter Dinner for my mother. Aasif jiddan.

Party’s over, the house is *relatively* clean and the only things still lingering are two 3-D crepe-paper fish hanging from the ceiling. (I rather like them, perhaps I’ll leave them up.) Nothing spices up a party (even a party for grown women) quite like a bunch of tacky party decorations. These fish were part of a larger set of Hawaiian party decorations, which originally included those flower necklaces, a grass skirt, a huge 3-D paper parrot, and various under-the-sea themed junk. The grass skirt went home with someone already, and the flower necklaces went the way of the dodo, but the big parrot is still around.

Oh yeah, and there were two water guns. One has since been lost, and the other is in my desk drawer, since you never really know when you’re going to be needing one in this day and age. What with crime rates being so phenomenally high and all: Freeze, evildoer! Stand and be inundated!

Enough on today’s party, on to yesterday’s English Night. I will not bore you with the grammatically-oriented details, rather I will regale you with the menu. Turkish samosa, chocolate mousse, authentic German apple streusel, potato salad, hummus and crackers, ice cream, and of course, gallons and gallons of Turkish tea. I -heart- Turkish tea. (he he) And of course, there were Ferre Rocher bon-bons and Turkish Delight. Someone has recently complained that I am very food-oriented. With a menu like that, who can blame me?

Hmm, I’ll try to write about something other than food….hmmm…how about food from a cultural perspective? It was very interesting to note that the Turkish samosa was very much like the Pakistani one, but instead of being fried into little triangles, it was layered in a pan and baked. And the authentic German streusel was NOTHING like what Americans call streusel. It was pastry dough stuffed with apples, raisins and spice, and rolled. American streusel is a brown-sugar, butter, and oat-meal topping that you sprinkle on other things. I wonder how that happened…ok, no more food.

How about politics? No, politics these days are depressing. I don’t want to talk about Bushs’ plans for global domination. Afghanistan…Iraq…then Syria…probably Iran then. Bush has no right to talk about human rights or freedom, he alone is more responsible for more deaths worldwide than any other world leader at the moment. (Afghanistan + Iraq = Genocide, but these days we call it collateral damage, don’t we? hmmm) Ya Allah, it’s horrible and shocking. Now you see why I prefer to talk about food instead.

How about sports? The Cricket World Cup has been over and done for a long time, but what else is there to talk about? 😛 I can’t believe Australia won. I think the cup should have been awarded on the basis of sportsmanship. Australia would never have won if it was….they admitted they were bowling at peoples’ heads on purpose! Hmmph! I’m not going to say anything bad about the Australian cricket team, I don’t know whether or not I’ll get in trouble for it. (Hi Sonia! Happy birthday!) I’m still thinking bad thoughts though, I really am. grrrrrr

How about art and literature? It may not be art, but I just finished reading The Best of Roald Dahl. Aside from writing children’s stories like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Dahl wrote wickedly funny short stories. His sense of humor was macabre, and at times, just gross. I wouldn’t recommend the book if you’re squeamish. If you’re in Islamabad (tell ‘em Three-Fingers Jack sent ya!) you can find it at Mr. Old Books, Jinnah Super.

How about medicine? I’ve learnt that other foreigners I know have gotten sick from eating at glitzy-shiny restaurants that are normally a foreigner’s mainstay in Islamabad: like Subway, KFC, and the Arizona Grill. Two people I know got violently ill from eating at KFC, my sister got sick from eating at Subway, and the US embassy here issued a warning to its citizens that the Arizona Grill was off-limits because there had been several cases of food poisoning. I say stick to the dirty little thela-walas (cart-dudes) in the bazaars, at least then you’re expecting to get sick, and a little *intestinal distress* is nothing compared to a case of food poisoning. I would know, I had food poisoning last week, remember?

How about science and technology? Ummm, my digital camera is broken….the atmosphere these days contains high concentrations of moisture…some old bread in the fridge grew some cool blue and green fuzz…now if that isn’t science at it’s best, then I don’t know what is! Oh, and I know three people who have come back from China in the last month, thank God, none of them have developed a dry fever and a high cough…or was it a high fever and a dry cough? Therefore I am still SARS-free. (BiFazlAllah! SubhanAllah! Phew!)

Hmmm, it’s midnight and I’m very much alive awake alert enthusiastic. (…ah the camp days, eh Amira? Burly Girls Rock!) I indulged in a little post-party snooze, which lasted for four hours instead of forty minutes. So I woke up at ten o’clock this evening and here I am. Everyone else is asleep, and the only other person up right now is the left-over birthday cake, which may or may not see the light of tomorrow morning. ::slurp slurp:::

Today’s Islamic quote of the day is another one of my many, many favorites. Some of you may remember seeing this on LionAround’s blog last week, but that’s ok. A good thing is worth repeating.

The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of God be upon him) said, “There are four bad qualities, if anyone has all four of them they are a perfect hypocrite, and if anyone has one them they are a hypocrite in part until he leaves it and repents. These qualities are: embezzlement in property and breach of trust, lying, breaking a pact or agreement or promise, and swearing in an argument and using foul language.” -Bukhari and Muslim.

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