Wednesday, July 28, 2010


I guess this is one of those cliched posts where I talk about the immense shock and grief facing everyone who's family members were on the plane that crashed, everyone who knew someone on the plane and everyone who knows someone who was related to/friends with someone who lost their life on the plane. I belong to the third category, and I found myself wanting to cry at random moments during the day.

Because it could have been any of us on that plane, because it could have been our parents and loved ones crying for us, because it could be us whose spouse/girlfriend/boyfriend/children would never see them again, us whose honeymoon was cut short by a plane crash.

I've been on Air Blue flights before. I've been on a plane full of school teams going to Lahore for a Model UN conference, and just thinking about what may have gone through the minds of those students going for the Youth Parliament as they realized they were going to die makes me want to break down. It's not even stress or nervous anxiety because I'm going to be traveling soon. The fact of death itself doesn't frighten me as much as the thought of the pain it will cause those who love me and care about me.

152 is a big, big number when you consider all the thoughts in that plane when those people knew they were about to die. Did they even know?

And how many families were left bereaved?

Edit: Today I received an invite for a " going-away-to-college-party-" aka let's get drunk and have fun together one last time. And I don't have the heart to go and let my hair down when a plane carrying people like me just crashed into a hill and burned the people inside it to death. Something makes me feel that it's just not right. I always have a severe debate raging in my head about these things and I don't generally go to any, but right now I just feel it's downright insensitive to be having a party two days after a plane crash that cause so many people to suffer such a tremendous loss. But then again, who am I to say. To each his own.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Oh noez

So, ladies and gentlemen, I think I have typhoid. Again.

Friday, July 2, 2010

57 and going back.

I was really hoping that my next blog post would be more meaningful than just me whining about my life, and yet, here it is and here I am, ready to complain.
These days the one question I get asked a lot is "So, what are your college plans?" and its variation "How are your preparations for college going?". I can't answer I don't know, because no one believes me. Truth is, I really do not know.
Here's the visa, here's the ticket, and yet, I don't know. I should be all set with my ticket out of here, a ticket to my prospects and an actual future where no one can treat me like crap just because I'm a girl without a father. To be fully prepared to go to one of my dream schools. And still, I don't know. Because I'm struggling, because people back out of promised help, because there are a million things that have to be done before I can finally leave. Two months ago, I had a semester's tuition sponsored, somehow with some help from a friend. Now, all of a sudden, I don't. Disappearances, people going AWOL without notice- It's all too much for me to think about. I've stopped sleeping at nights, I think, and I think a lot. I think about rich kids. People tell me to stop "hating on them" but I can't help begrudging people the easy lives they lead. They don't know, they really don't, that while they spend 5000 rupees on a night, I'm thinking of how much the next year is costing my mother. How I can't even afford college even with financial aid that makes most of my peers' jaws drop. I hear it a lot "Thats ALL you have to pay? That's IT?! Wow man!", and I don't know how to explain. It's too much, it is still too much. So while someone's parents spend lakhs and lakhs on foreign education for them, and as these kids waste themselves away on love lives and booze and parties (not to generalize, I know a lot of people who don't do these things at college.), I sit here and wonder what will happen. With 57 fucking days to go. 
In truth, my life is a million times better than that of the rickshaw driver who killed himself and his family a few days ago because of poverty. It's a lot better than that of the woman who threw herself on train tracks with her children because of poverty. It's better, I have food to eat, I have a home, I'm privileged to be part of the 1% of the population of Pakistan who lives what is could be called a comfortable life.
And yet.
But I'll get to the whys and the hows and the whats. Family. I find that word laughable, except when it comes to my mother and my sisters. No one knows I'm supposed to be going abroad. My mother has been told it's a waste of money to spend so much on a girl, she's heard it all so many times, she could repeat it while asleep. Hell, she developed a heart problem overstressing herself. People stop caring when they see you've got the same old car. When they see you don't wear designer clothes, don't sport fancy accessories. When they realize you have no useful connections. When, generally, your father dies in this country.
It's a flaw, having a brain and ambition. A big one. It makes you realize you are so much bigger and better than what you see around you, that you deserve this chance because you have worked for it, worked to redeem yourself and to correct the mistakes you made. It's exhausted you. Sometimes, you wonder about the point of it all. Is it worth it? It takes so much away. Too much, almost.
And yet.
All people see is, to cut a long story short, the trip to Boston. Like cake, that was served to you on a platter. You've stopped explaining, because it's too much effort to tell everyone that along the way, these things have have taken a lot from you, even while they've taught you incomparable lessons. Every achievement, every heartache, every rejection. How does one even begin to explain.
And yet.
It's scandalous. The thought of working in a boutique, a shop, a Mcdonald's is scandalous. We don't do that in Pakistan if we're from a "good family". What does being from a "good family" mean anyway? Is it a stamp of approval? Is it living in a certain locality? Is it studying in a certain school? Is it the people you know, the places you're seen at? I never understood. So you sit and you resign yourself to having no money, because you're young and well, money is hard to come by. Because you don't have that expensive degree from that famous university yet.
And yet.
Even when you're close to that degree, you can't quite have it. 
So what do you do? You sit and you smile when your friends say "Thats ALL you have to pay? That's IT?! Wow man!". And you lose sleep, and your mind, thinking about what will happen, about how you deserve this because it's all yours. It's drastic, it's painful and it cuts. But you sit and you smile and you answer questions.
And count the days, I guess.