Sunday, July 31, 2011

Stephen Colbert on the Norwegian Terrorist

LOL. This guy's brilliant!!! I can't get over it, man!
Here, take a look at his views on this ... oh how I love the way he spreads the truth and the way he mocks the media! He's so clever, so smart, so honest, so funnny!! God preserve him.

Oh, and I have a long blog post coming on this whole Norwegian attack thingie, but I'll have to wait until I can actually edit and post it. But do take a look at this quote (in addition to the video below):
If the person who killed 100+ people in Norway were Muslim, the Press would have declared him as a terrorist. For now though, he is just an 'Assailant ', 'Attacker' (Reuters), 'Gunman' (BBC, CNN & Al Jazeera). Looks like 'Terrorist ' is a name reserved for Muslims? The US Dept of State calls it an 'Act of Violence', Not an 'Act of Terrorism'.

Talk about the hypocrisy of the media!

P.S. Ramadhan mubarak to the whole world!!! Best wishes for a beautiful year to all!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Self Reflections: Learning to be Humble

Have you ever met someone who just never gets angry and seems to get along well with everyone? Someone who seems to love and respect everyone? And have you ever wondered how she/he does that? Well, I have this friend who went to Morocco a couple of years ago, and she says she met this one person there who's just like that someone who *never* gets angry at anyone and gets along with everyone. She says she asked him how that is possible, and here's his response (rough):

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Touring through a Rich Past: The Trip to Petra, with Pictures

Hello, beloveds!
So, here are some photos and stories from our trip to Petra.
Before anything, get this:

Some history (pasted verbatim from this website):
Petra is a city which was carved out of the Sharah Mountains by the Nabataeans, an industrious Arab people who settled here more than 2,000 years ago, turning it into an important junction for the silk, spice, and other trade routes that linked China, India, and southern Arabia with Egypt, Syria, Greece, and Rome.

Petra fell into obscurity for hundreds of years, its location and very existence kept a closely guarded secret by the local Bedouin, before being re-discovered by the Swiss explorer Burkhardt in 1812.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

I got my nose pierced!!

So, I got my nose pierced, people! It's sooo exciting! The extremely low prices were too irrisistable, though I'd have gotten it no matter the cost, since I've been wanting it for years! I don't know why I never actually got it done before, but thank God I didn't -- 'cause they're bloody expensive in the U.S. I believe a nose piercing is at least 15 dollars in the U.S. whereas *all* piercings here are barely 3 dinars (plus a dinar for service/tip, but they charge you that themselves), including belly piercings, damnit! Belly piercings in the U.S., for example, are 50 dollars ... and to think they're only 4 here :( ... but, hey, ma'lish! :D

k, that's all, folks! :)  It's just, this nose piercing was rrreally important to me! Oh, and I think traditionally (Pakistanis/Indians, etc.) get it done it on their left nostrils... and that suggests you're being traditional. Although I would have had no problem getting it on the left one, I wanted to be, um, "different" (:|) and got it on the right one instead :p Whaaaaaat, doesn't the right side of everything represent goodness and everything good/positive in Islam?! Yeah, well, to all the goodness that I'm to experience after today, then :)

I'll show you photos of my nose (LOL! This sounds so funny) some other time, k? Haven't taken any yet.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Missing my Parents and the Apple of My Eye - Kashmala!!

So, you guys, I miss my family terribly! They miss me, too, of course (I mean, who wouldn’t), but it’s just … I don’t know. The missing isn’t going well right now. And Kashmala?!?!?! Oh my God! I’m going INSANE without her, world!! I always knew I loved her this crazy, but I’m going crazier than I ever thought I would if I were to be away from her for longer than week! I managed to survive without her in Pakistan, and I’m tryina figure out why that was. It can’t be that I was always busy there, since I’m even more busy here. There, I had people/family/relatives to meet every day, something to do every day, somewhere to go every day; here, same thing (save the family/relative part): there’s always a group activity, meeting, event, homework/assignments/presentations/etc. that need to be taken care of every day. But then again, in Pakistan, there were trillions of kids around, so I guess I didn’t feel the need to have a kid around me so much. But here? None :( Well, I saw this little baby boy at the center the other day, and OH MY GOD!!! He was not only the handsomest thing ever, but he was also soooo adorable he took my breath away! MashaAllah, tf, tf, nazara na shi. But that doesn’t happen much. Few scholars/students working at the center have babies. ~sighs~

I don’t know . . . I’m just wondering now *how* I’m gonna live without her when I move next month. And the worst part is this: By the time I see her around August 15th, ka khairee, she’ll be three months older than I saw her last time! THREE MONTHS OLDER, people, THREE FREAKING MONTHS OLDER!!!! I don’t want her to grow!!!! I was talking to her on Skype the other day, and she’s sooo grown up!!! But she’s still the most prettiest, most adorablest thing on earth, so it was still cool. But I can’t let her grow any older than this, y’all. I try to talk to her every other day, if not every day, but you know how babies are: my sister leave her at the computer to talk to me, and she stares into the camera and plays peek-a-boo and “Shanu-sing-this-song” with me for a little while, and then she gets bored so she leaves without saying bye K ughguhgerteiwruituir!!!!!!!

Anyway, all this just to say I miss my family very much.  Oh, and this is the first time I’ve been away from my family, too :) I mean, it’s not socially acceptable for Pashtun (and many other eastern) parents to allow their daughters to live on their own, even for a little while, and especially to be abroad. So I love, love, LOVE my dad and mom for having let me do this. In a matter of some days or so, I’ll post a blog entry on how the conversation between me and him went when I informed him that I got the scholarship and was asking him whether he thinks I should go or not. To be honest, I applied for the scholarship thinking I would never go even if I got it! But I sorta needed it for my own self confidence, to feel like I could get something this important, y’know.  I can’t imagine how I would’ve felt had I not won it. But anyway, so, yeah. That conversation was really interesting, too. And when he approved of my going to an Arab country all alone (well, okay, with the CLS program), I felt like I was dreaming. I couldn’t believe it! My sister and I had discussed it before I told him I got it, and she’d reminded me he’d never say yes, and I’d prepared myself for a “Congratulation!! – but of course you’re not going” (but in a bit nicer way, ‘course). And then when he said yes … OH MY GOD!! I was like, “Dad, are you SURE?” Ohhh man! That was a beautiful, BEAUTIFUL day! It taught me a lotta things about myself and my dad. And even my mom was happy about it and told everyone I was going to Country X for the summer!! I’d be like, “Mom, shh! What if dad says I can’t go?” She was like, “Don’t worry. He’ll prolly say yes.”

Will post that conversation another time. I should get going now. I also have a LOT of other stuff to write, like on my trip to Swat and my recent visit to Um Qias, this rrrreally exciting place here where Palestinians who were kicked out of Israel or who fled for their lives come to that spot to look over their homeland. You can see Syria, Lebanon, Sea of Galilee, and Israel all from that one point. Amazing stuff.  All this to come soon – with some photos!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Details on the Dead Sea Trip - with Photos!

Imagine standing in the footsteps of Moses, peace be upon him!
Okay, so, on Friday, July 15th 2011, I had a very “spiritual” day. I accomplished a lot, and I saw some places I’d been dying to see ever since I got to the Middle East, among them the River Jordan and the Dead Sea. There’s something really special about this place (not just this country but about every country where a Prophet lived or spent some time or traveled through or visited), and I love it for this reason among many others. The feeling you get that you’re *probably* stepping in the footsteps of someone as important as Moses or Jesus (peace be upon them), for example, is worth dying for. To stand on a mountain, looking over a place that is certainly somewhere a Prophet must have stood, given a speech or two, or at least laid his eyes on is beyond wonderful. It is believed that John the Baptist baptized Jesus (peace be upon him) at the River Jordan. Now, this river is long, but the part where it is believed he was baptized at – I saw it. It’s called the Baptism Site. I’ll tell you about how we got there and all in a minute. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

I Was at the Dead Sea!

Dearest readers,
So, a friend and I went to the Dead Sea and a number of other historically and religiously significant points of the Middle East, and OH. EM. GEE!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm really, really tired right now (it's 12am here), so I can't write much, but I had, had, HAD to get this off my chest :) You understand. It's just ... I'd been waiting since foreeeever!! And I saw a mountain where Moses (peace be upon him) gave his last speech and the parta the Dead Sea I saw was the one facing Israel, so that was exciting, too! And the part of the Moses mountain that I saw was facing Palestine, and that, my beloved friends, was a feeling to cherish! And then I saw the part of the River Jordan that's right across from the West Bank (Palestinian Territory), so that, too, felt rrrrreally awesome. I mean, I got in the water and "almost" touched another country, LOL. It felt beeeautiful being in two places at once, y'know.

k, more on all this later. I must sleep now.
Thanks for listening!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

My Arabic Nickname: Amira!

So my friends call me “Amira” (princess in Arabic! Surprised? Don’t be :p I’m lurved!), mainly ‘cause I act really “rich” and spoiled and all. I mean, well, it’s just that … my bookbag is very, very important to me, y’know. So I don’t want it on the floor when we have enough chairs in class for everyone to sit in, plus some 2 or so extra seats available, y’know. And it’s not like the floors are clean enough to begin with. I mean, they’re not clean, and so when I put my bookbag on the floor, it gets dirty, and then when I pick up that bookbag, it dirties my back, and I don’t like that. You understand.

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