Thursday, September 18, 2008


Keywords: Ramadan, rain, miscellaneous ranting

From a distance, I noticed a 14 year-old girl running away from a Somali beggar woman. The streets were as empty as ever and I wondered what this kid is doing and if I missed any action. She was wearing an abaya, but you can tell from her soft looks and fair skin that she is of northern origin. Probably Lebanese, Syrian. She disappeared against the foreground of cars parked by the roadside. I turned to look at the other side and saw her enter into her dad’s four-wheel-drive shiny black Lexus Trooper. The giant car passed me by and I looked back at the Somali woman and discovered that she has just been handed some food and a canned drink by the girl. I turned behind me and from a distance saw exactly the same routine being repeated. The black Lexus stopped, the girl came out, passed some food to another black woman beggar down the road, then she run back into the car.

It’s now Ramadan. The muslim holy month. To the muslims, Ramadan means one has to fast in order to be one with the poor. The purpose is to be able to experience the same hunger and weakness as those who suffer them on a daily basis. For those who have been blessed in life with materials things, it is also a month when they are to be more generous to the poor. A time to count one’s blessings in humility and allow ourselves to share them with others.…Most of all, Ramadan is a month of blessing from God.

Some say that generosity is only possible when there is humility.
Today I tried cooking my friend Lawrence’ famous “Lazyman’s recipe”. Throw ginger, garlic, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, raisins, knorr chicken cube and mix with rice inside the rice cooker and that’s it. Less than 10 min. of preparation and you’re done. Hmm. Today I learned something useful in life.

6 months in the middle east and I still wonder whether all these I’m experiencing is but a dream…I pinch myself…

5 years ago in Manila, my childhood friend Peter gave me a Japanese cartoon movie. I copied them into my hardisk and forgot about it. Last night, 20,000 km. away in Jeddah, while cleaning up my drive, I found it covered with layers of dust and spider webs inside the folder named “Movie”. I clicked the folder and found a subfolder “Spirited Away”. I watched the movie by Miyazaki twice. After that, I decided I want to become a writer of fictional stories and maybe someday, I’d like to produce a movie. I want to be able to share stories of adventure and of new and different worlds I have seen…I seem to have lost them and now I want to get them back.
Isnt it a bit too late at this age? You mean at this age, you’re still wondering and trying to find out what you ought to be doing in life? Yeah. I haven’t found out yet. That’s the truth. I have a sense that I will never arrive and that this epic journey will continue up to my last breath.

Maybe I should start out by writing about my life. I believe that life is not random and haphazard and that real life is sometimes hard to distinguish from fiction…I want to believe that the real world is as magical as fiction. Yes, it is true that life can be very dull and monotonous and…and dull and monotonous…and monotonous and dull….Like the pitter-pattering of raindrops that seems never-ending.

Oh I miss rain in this dry desert place.

Let us imagine that every human soul on earth is a raindrop. Every raindrop that falls on the window pane tells a story. Those that don’t fall on the window pane also have their stories. Alone, every raindrop is a short-story. However, when its story is interwoven with stories of other raindrops plus other forms of souls such as the wind, the soil, the earth, the flowers. That seemingly insignificant raindrop begins to form a kaleidoscope of different worlds. It becomes a refreshing Storm or a strong Typhoon and at some time, it is a pleasant cool drizzle with a sniff of wildflower scent. Raindrops, when it is alone produces no music but when put together becomes a symphony... Besides, raindrops produces an aroma and smell too. Are you beginning to smell it now? The aroma and scent of soil-drenched rain. And thunderstorms! Besides smell and sound, I love the sight of rain. It has a very refreshing effect on me – somehow it keeps my spirit more alive.

I remember as a child, when I was about 3 or 4 years old. My mom will put me on top of a sewing machine. I remember I used to sit there for hours and hours just watching the raindrops fall onto the window pane. I guess watching the raindrops this way had a hypnotic effect on me and I just couldn’t get enough of it. Hours and hours I watched until it stopped. Probably it also developed in me this proclivity for reflection.

Later on as I grew up and I reached 8 years of age, I started telling stories. I used to come to our house-helpers and greet them with a story. they will stop whatever else they have been busy with and put on a stance, as if something very interesting is about to happen. Then I will start telling them my- whatever comes to mind bullshit. Haha. Instantly, as if drawing inspiration from thin air, I weave up stories and plots impromptu and when I stopped to catch my breath or start running out of a continuation, they will ask,: “Then what happened to Quikru?”, and then I will use that split second opportunity to think up something and will say: “Oh!, he got stucked in the quicksands and started yelling for help”…And then I will continue. Oftentimes when I got stuck and asked a similar question, I pretend to know the continuation to the story by simply uttering whatever comes to mind. And everyone will burst out in laughter- including myself.

No comments: