Sunday, January 22, 2012
Saturday, January 21, 2012
“New faces, new ways and new places, here I come.”
This was what I was thinking as I made my way through the familiar airport of Sri Lanka. I have been here before, on various shopping trips with my family. However, this time it was different. Different because this time, I am supposed to two years here. Also, different because this time, my parents would never be there to spoil me.
As I entered the place which was supposed to be my new home, I found a million things to complain about. Not because things weren't in order, but rather because of how determined I was to find everything wrong about it. I went on and on about how I did not have any friends, or how the sand here was never white. I grumbled about the food and about how some people I met here expected Maldivians to be extremely bad people. Of course, I missed home.
At first, I made things difficult for everyone around me. However, as days passed on, I found myself adjusting slowly. I slowly started getting along with my housemates. Furthermore, as college started I made many new friends.
For once in my life, I have started finding pleasure in things except shopping and dinners and hanging out. Not that I could still survive without shopping (hell I cant O_O) , but I totally could spend a happy gazillion hours with the lil girl who lives at my place, Meesam. We did all kinds of fun stuff like making cards and dancing. She'd sometimes be so naughty and just when I'm about to get all frustrated, she'd show me the flowers she got for me, or the cards and I'd melt all over. I am pretty much the party girl, and I couldn't imagine spending a minute somewhere peaceful. However, I found joy in going to the park and just sitting, watching children play. Sometimes Meesam would ask me to give her a push on the swing, and I would. Sometimes, I just sit on a bench and watch the birds.
Moreover, I am learning how to cook. Sadly, one of the things few things I can't do, but would love to. I have started to spend more time doing things for myself.
I have started to change in ways I never knew I could, and I am happy about it. With every passing day, I learn so many news things. I learnt that being happy doesn't revolve around shopping and shoes. Moreover, I learnt that no matter where you go, it’s always important to be who you really are. You do not have to change the person you are, just to get accepted.
Almost a month has passed since I moved here. Now, I look forward to the 2 years I have left. I have taken up political science and mass communication as my majors in college, and I think it is so far, the best decision I have ever made in my life.
However, every day I face the question, “Why political science?”
To this, I always smile and shrug, most of the time because I do not know what to say. I decided to study political science because I want to make a change. And as to answering the question, “what change?” I’d never even finish answering that question.
Yes, I belong to a society that needs that many changes.
We have yet, to mature as social beings. It’s not a matter of choosing the right leader anymore. It has been brought down to being a matter of right and wrong. We are one sad little nation that's among the lowest populated from the world, and also with an insanely high count of grave social issues like domestic violence, drug abuse and gang violence.
So yes, I have a dream. I dream of making a change one day. A change so good, that around the globe we see the white flags of peace. A day when there’s no discrimination between gender, race and ethnicity. A day we all could forget our differences and learn to tolerate. A day I could walk safe in my own country.
Sigh, that's all for now, be back later. Till then, keep smiling :)
And yeah, here are some of the few pics I managed to get with my little family, before they headed back to the sunny side!
Dad with McDonald's Ronald.
Me and mom , Oh I miss her so! ):
With lil Mr. Annoying, Raif. I miss you too, lil one
And finally me, after getting reddish maroon highlights on my hair yesterday. It was just one of those crazy urges you have. I was coming home from college, saw the salon, and was like, "hey, highlights!" :P
Friday, January 6, 2012
- The way my roommates helped me through everything. I remember how Riyasha neatly made stitches on my traditional dress with a needle and thread, even though she barely knew how to. She made me try it over and over again, fixing it till it was perfect. I remember how we all did yoga and danced. I remember taking dibs on toilet, the AWESOME food, boduberu, the many trips and everyone teasing me about so much stuff!
- How I sang for everyone on more than a few occasions. On the karaoke nights, during the 'cultural' day, and many a night under the huts till we were shooed off to bed.
- Learning to respect people, especially the Bangladeshi people in Maldives who are so mistreated, so degraded. Over and over again, I had the chance to think about how sorry a situation it was.
- I learnt how in a democracy, we have to discipline ourselves enough to be able to accept the fact that if the majority of the people think along the same lines, I have to respect the decisions made according to them as long as my rights are preserved. EVEN THOUGH my opinions may differ.
- I also learnt that I didn't need to have power, in order to make a change. There are certain things which I can do as an individual, or in a small group to make things better. Even the simplest thing we do, could turn the world around. And this we know, from the many inspirational people around the world.
- From all the very inspiring lecturers we had, someone who inspired me very much was the judge from high court in Maldives Shujoon, who was the first judge in Maldives. She was so in control, so poised and I think is a great example for all the girls like me. Really, makes you wanna say, "Go,Woman!!!" :P
- Our facilitators Falak, Shaam and Naaj were the best ever. We all loved them and they were all so helpful throught the whole program. And even though I had wailed and screamed so much at Shaam for shooing us off from the TV at lights out time, I think the three of them did everything so perfectly.
- The program has changed the way I thought about SO MUCH stuff, that its difficult to point out everything. However, I will always remember the stuff I learnt and would always be thankful to Democracy House and Mr. Dean for giving me the best three weeks of my life.
- Throughout the program, Sal and Naafi were two people who pushed us always, to excel and do our best. And for this, I'd always be thankful to both of them.
- Sal has been the most inspiring person I met throughout it all. People like her, they make me want to be a better person. Moreover, she is hope. For me, and for many young people out there.. because she is proof that there ARE adults who listen to young people. People who think that what we say and think, matter. And these, are only few of the many reasons why I think she'd be the best mentor I could ever have.
So.. How is Colombo treating me?
Oh my, this has turned out to be one LONG post. About Lanka, I think that would be another update. I have still not adjusted well and my laptop is arriving in a few weeks, so I guess I'd be updating regularly from then onwards. Till then, adios :)