Sameera and the Forbidden Fruit (III)

That first day of Ramadan was not an easy day for Sameera. First she had to give up her morning Turkish coffee and cigarettes, which had become her daily ritual for some time. Second, the work in her office was so light that day that she kept dosing all day long, blessing her stars when the working hours were done, and she finally got to go home. But even then she couldn’t take a nap because of that persistent headache, and also because of what Alberto told her the day before, after protesting to attend any of his gatherings in Ramadan, so long he served Alcohol.
“A hypocrite? Is that what he thinks I am?” she vented out to Foziya while they were walking in Mishrif before breaking her fast that day. But instead of comforting her friend, Foziya agreed with Alberto completely, and above that accused Sameera of being no different from Awatif. In her accusation Foziya was referring to few nights before Ramadan when Sameera attended a party with Alberto, in one of the rented apartments of Almasaleh complex in Bnaid Algar.
Bu Waleed, Alberto’s boss had invited Alberto to his parties many times, of which Alberto declined all. But knowing that Alberto had a Kuwaiti girlfriend, this time he invited the couple assuring them that no one would be invited to the party without Sameera’s approval. And to show his good intention, he gave Alberto the guests’ list and the privilege to scratch any name the couple didn’t feel comfortable with.
Sameera, who felt her lover’s embracement to decline his boss’s generous offer, agreed to accompany Alberto to that party after making sure that it was safe for her to do so. The apartment was very nice from inside. A huge glass wall overlooked the towers of Kuwait city that looked beautiful with its lights at night, other scattered lights as if gems shaped what looked like a marina. Along that wall chairs were placed all the way from the entrance to the bar that stood in front of the huge main entrance door. On the other side few sofas and ottomans in a semi-circle, all arranged on a one-step raised floor. And none of the guests looked familiar, which comforted Sameera a lot, and eased her tensed muscles. Which she needed to enjoy her first real party with Alberto.
And close to the time of her curfew, and on her way to the bathroom, Sameera noticed the host ushering six ladies who were all covered with black veils and abayas to the main bedroom. They seemed to have just entered the apartment, but they looked out of place, which raised her curiosity, a tad. And when she found that the bathroom outside was occupied, she knocked on the main bedroom with an excuse to use the bathroom that was located inside. And when one of the girls opened the door Sameera was shocked to find that all the girls were now in what looked more like negligees than evening dresses. But she lowered her head and walked towards the bathroom. On her way out she heard a voice calling ”Sameera, is that really you?” and it was Awatif.
Awatif, her old friend, left high school when she was hardly sixteen to get married, and Sameera never heard of her after that. Awatif’s father, who was a devout Moslem with seven daughters, married them off one by one through the mosque. When each reached puberty, the father would announce that in the mosque, and the suitors would come. All what Sameera knew about Awatif’s husband was that his only qualifications were that he was religious, with short Dishdasha and a long beard. And although Sameera tried to convince her young friend then, not to go ahead with this marriage, Awatif would not hear of it, she was too eager to get rid of her father’s tight grip. And his constant reminder of being cursed with the responsibility of having so many daughters showered Awatif with guilt. And what blew Sameera’s mind that night was when she realized that Awatif, who was a mother of two now, sneaked out of her marriage bed and came to this party with some cheap girls. And what made her even feel more disgusted was the fact that one of the other girls came with her mother, both of which sneaked out of their homes that night.
And that made Sameera rethink a lot of things in her life, only three days after Ramadan started and while she was praying Algiyam in the Grand Mosque with her mom and aunt Om Ahmad. She was totally confused and couldn’t decide which was crueler; Foziy’a accusation, or Alberto’s.
She wanted to believe that these rituals were necessary to cleanse her soul. Yet she felt nothing when her mind was busy thinking about Alberto, and praying for Alberto. It was silly to think that getting closer to God was her way to get closer to Alberto while she was driving Alberto away with her attitude. In the three days that passed, she was not only unhappy, but was miserable. She then decided that things had to change, and she had to be more honest to herself. Three days, she realized, was more than she could handle without seeing Alberto.
When she called him that night, after reaching home, Alberto did not answer, but next morning when she called, he was still in bed and was down with flu. And as soon as she finished her errands at the office she went to Sultan Center and then straight to his apartment where she made him chicken soup, fed him, and later slipped herself with him in bed. Spooning him, she drifted into a deep sleep. When she opened her eyes, she realized that it was already dark outside.
Hastily, she ran to her silenced mobile to see that she already had more than ten missed phone calls of which at least nine were from home. She did not wake Alberto who was still asleep and ran to her car where she called her mother telling her that she got occupied at work. But of course the family did not buy her lies, and a huge fight started between her and her father. And since that day, where she stopped communicating with her father, her life was never to be the same.

To be continued


11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. shosho
    Jul 05, 2007 @ 13:26:41

    Great story Ayya! It’s getting more exciting :))

    And it’s “cheap” not “cheep”!


  2. AyyA
    Jul 05, 2007 @ 13:30:56

    Thanks Shoshoa :*


  3. intlxpatr
    Jul 05, 2007 @ 15:10:08

    I think she is giving Alberto too much power in her life. And doesn’t she risk her reputation in attending that party; doesn’t she risk gossip? Certainly the names of the veiled women were not on the list she was given – that would raise a trust issue in my mind immediately.


  4. jewaira
    Jul 06, 2007 @ 08:56:49

    Very interesting details and a sad look into the untold hypocrisies that surround us.


  5. Stephen_Dedalus
    Jul 06, 2007 @ 21:24:14

    Hypocrisy is a common human failing. However, it is a collective failing of societies , rather than individuals.

    I’m trying to remember who it was that: “Hypocrisy is the tribute given by vice to virtue” or similar.

    I attended a wedding of one of my cousins in Georgia (US) last year. He was marrying a 43-year old grandmother, who had been married twice before. It was not unusual for a rural society in which fundamentalist Christianity denies access to adequate education about sex, resulting in young teenage kids having children and marrying (in whatever order) when they’re too immature to cope. As a consequence, they tend to be divorced by the time they’re into their mid-20s, with the consequent impact on their children.

    Different societies may have different taboos, but in general, the results are similar. There are things which become forbidden to express. When the expectations of society conflict with human nature, human nature will eventually express itself, with potentially unforeseen consequences. Lex malla, lex nulla.


  6. harmonie22
    Jul 07, 2007 @ 21:32:22

    Ooh, I love your blog. You are saying the unsaid and showing the double standards as well as the struggles within q8t society to live a normal life :)))


    Mehma kaan, keep on writing!


  7. AyyA
    Jul 09, 2007 @ 00:22:53

    Experience is an asset, and this is how we conduct our lives based on our experiences. And yes, she is giving Alberto much power in her life, but who said love is rational? 🙂

    Lady J
    Reality is bold in truth dear friend. But no matter how sad our reality may seem, facing and admitting it is the first step to find a solution(s). It is true that we don’t have a magic wand to solve all our problems, and no one should expect that, but at least we could civilly deal with them to lessen their effect on the society.

    Thanks for reminding me of François de La Rochefoucauld
    , I think he was the one with the maxim “Hypocrisie est un hommage que la vice rend à la vertu.” “Hypocrisy is a tribute vice pays to virtue”. And indeed Lex malla is lex nulla.

    Thanks dear for the encouragement. And someone has to talk. Bringing a problem to the surface is a healthy way to finding the cure. No one lives in utopia, and we shouldn’t think that we are different.
    Welcome aboard anytime friend.


  8. MHJ
    Jul 10, 2007 @ 15:19:42

    Dear Ayya, thanks for stoping by, and Yes I did see the Fawzan Fatwa, and by the way, there is a scanned copy from this document in a nice Arab – German blog:

    Arabs in Space


  9. Trackback: Sameera and the Forbidden Fruit (IV) « The Ultimate
  10. AyyA
    Jul 11, 2007 @ 11:28:50

    Thanks MHJ, and know that I’m a constant, silent reader of your blog. 🙂


  11. apartments valencia
    Oct 07, 2008 @ 18:54:37

    Very interesting details and a sad look into the untold hypocrisies that surround us all today.


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