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Dev Anand, BBC, and Population Control

I’m one of those people who goes to bed with the radio on and wakes up with the news. I woke up with BBC World Service this morning. Tthe second piece of news in the headlines was the passing away of Dev Anand. I was still in bed and my first though was if mom had heard this news yet or not, was about to get up to tell her when I remembered.

It had been some time that I had forgotten that mom herself was no longer here.

Well, one of her favorite films was Guide . Mom, this is dedicated to you:

But during breakfast I got thinking…why was this one of BBC WORLD Service’s main news piece? I mean what percentage of their world wide listeners actually even know who he is? True, other than the sub-continent, Bollywood is quite popular in GCC countries (that’s why I grew up with Bollywood), and possibly maybe in Malaysia and Indonesia…but…ah well, that’s it then…that’s A LOT…the sub-continent may only be one part of the world but they make up a significant percentage of the world’s population…and with that comes power..consumer power…and with that comes attention…businesses (including BBC) love a single large (mostly) homogenous consumer group…which is way in supermarkets in London you would find Indian ethnic items (food, clothing, music, etc) in abundance. But if I need to get my favorite Iranian sweet (Shereny Ard nokhodchey), I need to go to that charming Iranian shop in Peckham 😦

SOLUTION: I need to start a campaign urging Iranians to bred and multiply…forget population control…If you care at all about Nokhodchey, you would start having babies, loads and loads of them, tomorrow!! 😉

RIP Dev Saab and thank you for making all those movies that gave mom so many memories and so many stories to tell me 🙂

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…and just like that, 2 years have passed

Dear Mom,

It was two years ago today; two years.

Two years since you took you last breath…though, you had bid your farewell 4 days prior to that. You knew you only had four days left; the last time you were able to clearly communicate, you told us…individually..we weren’t allowed all in the room…you said your goodbyes…but I didn’t say it back…I still believed you will win this battle again…till two days after that day…it was two years and two days ago it dawned on me you are not going to win this time…how did I know? Well, one thing you learn after living in a cancer ward for 9 months is when someone’s soul is about to leave..it’s in their eyes mostly…and their hands…cold hands…hollow eyes…I came in your room, I knew you felt my presence but didn’t open you eyes, I took your hands to massage it…they were cold, i dropped your hands, I opened you eyes…it was empty…that’s when I knew, you had two days…I phoned Afshin and Arash, and told them..two days! That’s how long it took…two days…and you knew…you had told us so.

 

I still have the last piece of writing you wrote on that 4th day;

I still have your mobile;

I still have the shoes you wore when we transfered you from Kuwait’s hospital to Iran

I still have the slippers you wore in the hospital

…and I still have those little spiral blue notebooks you bought 2 dozens of because you loved writing down notes

 

The only thing I haven’t been able to touch in the past two years, is the last note you wrote

I will, soon…the thing is, everytime I think I am ready, I …

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Dad and sisters called today…they had just come from visiting you…I haven’t been since we last bid farewell…to me you are not there…you are not…you can’t be…

Happy Birthday Mom :D

Dear Mom,

It’s been 332 days since your body no longer joins us in our outings.

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People say you are not really gone…that your ‘real’ self is still with me…your soul is real…and it’s here…BUT…on this day…just on this day…i wish your body was here too…I just ache for a hug…just one more hug

 

Happy Re-Birthday Mom

 

Knowing you, you are probably celebrating in ______ by gathering everyone around and making them dance to an Indian song 😀 😀 😀 😀

 

Tavalode-dobarat Mobarak,

Noushin

No Expectations

I don’t know why for the past few days I wake up with a smile…a deep, light, sincere smile.

I don’t know why for the past few weeks all my dreams of mom are as if she never left. As if 2009 never happened.

I don’t know why my soul started decluttering without discussing it with me first.

I don’t know why my logical side no longer seeks answers.

I don’t know why I no longer feel angry; I hold no resentment against anyone; I no longer loath any thing or anyone.

I don’t know why I am calm; I am light.

I don’t know why I no longer want things, nor need things.

I don’t know why I no longer have any expectations from myself, from others, from god, from life, from destiny.

I don’t know what took over my soul; all I know is I like it.

How or why it happened, I don’t know

Smell of Ramadan

Dear Mom,

I can’t believe how I never realized how much of my world was colored in by you. 262 days have passed since you have left and since then colors seem to have faded from my world. I refused to acknowledge Nowrooz this year but that was understandable since I still in a confused state—only 116 days had passed since your departure when Nowrooz arrived. But my birthday was going to be different; I was determined to celebrate my it with you. I went to the same restaurant you took me to last year. Remember when you had arranged for permission to leave the hospital for 4 hours. You told the doctor it was your daughter’s birthday and you had no intention of celebrating it in the hospital. You were in your wheelchair and all dressed up by the time I got to the hospital.

…But what am I doing? I was going to talk about Ramadan. … though I’m not sure what Ramadan? This is not Ramadan. Not the Ramadan I am used; I’m used to your Ramadan. Your Ramadan is:

  1. Hearing you wake up Shahram for sahary
  2. Hearing Iranian radio doa during sahary
  3. Coming home 2 hours before iftar and seeing you watching Kuwaiti dramas
  4. Hearing you summarize the episode even though the summary usually took longer to tell than the actual episode itself 😀
  5. Seeing you get all teary eyed and emotional over the dramas
  6. Seeing you laugh with all your heart over the Kuwaiti comedies and translating each line for me 🙂
  7. Seeing you warm up milk just before iftar
  8. The dates, cheese, walnuts, sabzy (parsely and other green vegetables) and freshly baked bread
  9. Getting all of us non-fasting people to breakfast with Shahram so he won’t feel lonely J
  10. Seeing the colorful table you had set for dinner even though only two people usual fasted during Ramadan
  11. Setting with you and watching Iranian dramas together
  12. Laughing and crying together over the storylines

Now I come home and I hear no sound of Kuwaiti drama from behind the door. I turn the key, come in and stare at the silent dark tv screen. No color. I look at the dinning table. No sabzy, no walnut, no warm milk. No color. No sound of doa during Sahar. No color. Watching Iranian dramas but no crying. No color. Watching Iranian comedies but not laughing. No color.

Ramadan has no color without you.

UPDATE: (21st Aug)

1. I saw cream caramel yesterday in the supermarket. That’s another smell of Ramadan I will never feel again–the smell of freshly made cream carmel for iftar

Dokhtar Shirazi

Dear Mom,

Well, as my first post of us just ‘hanging’ out, look what I stumbled on:

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You used to sing this song all the time 🙂 🙂 …It’s “Dokhtar Shirazi” by Zia and Nasrin. I remember the first time you sang it, you used to stop and say, here the guy says, and then you would sing it; then you would stop and say, here the girl replies, and you would sing it 🙂 You were so cute 🙂

Click HERE to download the song

UPDATE

A reader requested the translation of the song. As you can see this song is an old flirtation Iranian folklore in the streets of a bazaar. Basically she was wearing a chador and he wanted to see stuff!!

Man: Shirazi girl, my dearest Shirazi girl. Reveal your hair to me so I would be content.
Woman: What do you want with my hair you ill-mannered boy? Haven’t you seen a noose in the bazaar? It;s just like that only much more expensive

Man: Shirazi dear, dearest shirazi girl. I ache for you lips till I see you again

Man: Shirazi girl, my dearest Shirazi girl. Reveal your eyebrows to me so I would be content.
Woman: What do you want with my eyebrows you ill-mannered boy? Haven’t you seen a bow in the bazaar? It’s just like that only much more expensive.

Man: [Now he wants to see her eyes]
Woman: [Again she tells him off, and says her eyes are like the almonds in the bazaar]

Man: [Now it’s the lips!!]
Woman [It’s like the Olives!! (I’ve no idea why she compares her lips to olives!!)

A year ago

Dear Mom,

Last week was the anniversary of Michael Jackson’s passing away. I clearly remember the day I found out. You told me. You were in the hospital. It always amazed me how you always knew what was going on in our world. I was out, with access to the internet, radio, newspaper and I hadn’t heard the breaking news. You were hospitalized and had heard.

These past few days had been tough for me. Memories of last year keep hunting me. It was in June that your doctor told me for the first time that you had six months to one year left…and I choose to have high hopes, I choose to prove him wrong, I choose to believe in miracles, I choose to alter reality, I choose to push back negative thoughts….but you knew, didn’t you?

I just came home from a long walk on the beach. Was talking to you. I had a lot to tell you…not about cancer or my regrets, or my loneliness, no, we talked like we have always talked. I updated you on the world cup, teased you on England being outed, told you about this great new restaurant we should try, job offers, leaving Kuwait,  Shahrukh Khan’s latest film, sale at Home Center, politics, and at one stage I heard you laugh out loud.

That’s when I realized, this is what I miss–just hanging out with you.

So, I’m gonna quit…I’m gonna quit all posts on reminiscing on where I went wrong on your treatment, on being mad at your doctors, on needing to know WHY you,…I’ll never find my answers.

Instead, we’ll just hang out like we used to.