(1) Your youth before you grow old
(2) Good health before you become sick
(3) Your solvency before your poverty
(4) Your relaxing time before you become busy
(5) Your life before you die
- Saying of Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon Him)
(Imad vais email signature)
All the six members of a family in the village Bagmara in Rajshahi attempted suicide by taking poison but were saved by timely intervention of neighbours. The reason, simply failing to completely repay NGOs a mere loan of 97,000 tk in time, though most of it has been repayed. According to news report, Alam Hossain, a rickshaw van driver, his wife, their two sons and their wives had drawn a loan of Taka 97,000 from four NGOs, namely BRAC, Caritas, IRDP and SHARP.
Obviously, the loansharks were not simply talking of loan but the loan plus the oppressive rates of interest. Last week officials from the NGOs went to the house of the beneficiary and pressed them for payment by Sunday, or else ----- . Or else they would confiscate the house and all that the family possessed including the CI sheets of the roof. All the pleas of the poor family to grant more time for payment went unheeded. Impoverished, harassed by NGO officials and driven to desperation, they tried to avail themselves of the ultimate escape chute which they felt was their only escape from the pain and humiliation.
and yet the leaders of these NGO get to wine and dine with the top brass, and are more than often potrayed as national heroes and 'saviours of the poor and downtrodden'. Bill Gates, on his 12 hr trip to Bangladesh, made time to visit a BRAC project. so, one can just imagine how far their arms reach!!!
we are always taught to hate the monsters in our history book, at the same time turning our eyes away from the present day monsters.
will not we, humans, who proud ourselves as the best of creation, learn to raise above the self and put humanity and justice above all? will the day not come, when poverty alleviation will not be just empty rhetorics, but sincere will of our leaders?
read the complete article from daily independent-bangladesh
Imagine what would happen if the nations of the world spent as much on development as on building the machines of war. Imagine a world where every human being would live in freedom and dignity. Imagine a world in which we would shed the same tears when a child dies in Darfur or Vancouver. Imagine a world where we would settle our differences through diplomacy and dialogue and not through bombs or bullets. Imagine if the only nuclear weapons remaining were the relics in our museums. Imagine the legacy we could leave to our children.
Imagine that such a world is within our grasp."
Mohamed ElBaradi, IAEA chief and Nobel Laureate for peace in 2005 in his acceptance speech.
The complete lecture
God Bless America
Here they go again,
The Yanks in their armoured parade
Chanting their ballads of joy
As they gallop across the big world
Praising America's God.
The gutters are clogged with the dead
The ones who couldn't join in
The others refusing to sing
The ones who are losing their voice
The ones who've forgotten the tune.
The riders have whips which cut.
Your head rolls onto the sand
Your head is a pool in the dirt
Your head is a stain in the dust
Your eyes have gone out and your nose
Sniffs only the pong of the dead
And all the dead air is alive
With the smell of America's God.
(c) Harold Pinter January 2003
Harold Pinter is a celebrated British playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature for 2005.
His masterpiece include "The Birthday Party" and "The caretaker".
Articles on his Nobel lecture titled Art, Truth & Politics
the complete lecture
see the video
my bike (which i got for free from zubayer vai) had a leak and the back tire tube needed to be changed. bikes here have gears within the backtire at the centre, so i didnt dare open it. the only option left was to take it to the bicycle shop and that means cutting a hole in the pocket.
mentally i was prepared to pay 150 kroner for it (1 kroner = 10.50 taka), but had to pay onlly 148 kr. 2 kroner less than expectation.... the tube costs 48 kroners and the workmanship is 100 kroners (for only 20 mins)
i just hope no rickshawala or cykeler garage wala come to know of this and start making demands for equal rights....
bring your own shisha
inspiration and creative thoughts
and in the process of this discovery, i realised one thing...
blogging can kill hell of a lot of ones precious time (dont blame me if you are wasting your own sweet time)
by the way, happy reading
first time in life, i am experiencing snowing (yes, its snowing. i hv seen snow, but not snowing itself).
wish some of my friends were here with me, you need the right company to truly enjoy moments like this. (just got back from outside... the soft touch of snow coming onto your face... made me feel ecstatic... or maybe plain simple happy... made some little snowballs and marked my name on the snow... (tasted it too... )snow tastes little diff from water). wish i had a camera to capture the moment...
eto feelings korte giye abar konita ber hoye na ashey...
anyway... here are few highlights of wat had trespassed in the meantime
- ailin vabi had not been to my new place. so i reckoned she deserved a formal invitation and taste of my (attempts at) cooking. so, last saturday there was a little so called house warming party at my place. altogether it was around ten ppl... a small little crowd...
- if you had seen my eid pics, you should hv realised, i was badly in need of a hairdo. well, it is actually something that i had planned long since, in fact while i was in BD, but..... so, this friday morning, i got up from bad and straight away arranged for my haricut. me, cutting my own hair.... impressive huh? i wouldnt claim its the best hair cut i hv had, but at least i dint get any odd stares later that day.
"fourteen working days" that was the reply when i enquired how long its gonna take... gosh, three weeks without a pc, especially when you are within a month of your project deadline. well, that was more than two weeks back...
hope for the best. thats all i hv to comfort myself.
2. weather forecast for the next three days... maximum: 5 C and minimum... 0 C.
hmmm... some cold times looming ahead.
3. bought myself a futon bed yesterday evening (second hand ofcourse). wang (my fren from china) and I carried it all the way from town (tough job for tough men) late yesterday evening ... so last night, i had a proper place to sleep. [background info: i was camping on a sleeping bag in my own bedroom since moving in to my new place beginning of this month].
this bed is very very comfortable and add to that the cosy comforter... the result: it was ten o clock when i finally got up. arghhh.
while in bed, struggling between the choice to continue sleeping or get up, i made a new resolution... i am going back to my sleeping bag affair!!!
AL-ZALZALA (THE EARTHQUAKE)
Total Verses: 8
Revealed At: MAKKA
In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
099.001 YUSUFALI: When the earth is shaken to her (utmost) convulsion,
PICKTHAL: When Earth is shaken with her (final) earthquake
SHAKIR: When the earth is shaken with her (violent) shaking,
YUSUFALI: And the earth throws up her burdens (from within),
PICKTHAL: And Earth yieldeth up her burdens,
SHAKIR: And the earth brings forth her burdens,
YUSUFALI: And man cries (distressed): 'What is the matter with her?'-
PICKTHAL: And man saith: What aileth her?
SHAKIR: And man says: What has befallen her?
YUSUFALI: On that Day will she declare her tidings:
PICKTHAL: That day she will relate her chronicles,
SHAKIR: On that day she shall tell her news,
YUSUFALI: For that thy Lord will have given her inspiration.
PICKTHAL: Because thy Lord inspireth her.
SHAKIR: Because your Lord had inspired her.
YUSUFALI: On that Day will men proceed in companies sorted out, to be shown the deeds that they (had done).
PICKTHAL: That day mankind will issue forth in scattered groups to be shown their deeds.
SHAKIR: On that day men shall come forth in sundry bodies that they may be shown their works.
YUSUFALI: Then shall anyone who has done an atom's weight of good, see it!
PICKTHAL: And whoso doeth good an atom's weight will see it then,
SHAKIR: So. he who has done an atom's weight of good shall see it
YUSUFALI: And anyone who has done an atom's weight of evil, shall see it.
PICKTHAL: And whoso doeth ill an atom's weight will see it then.
SHAKIR: And he who has done an atom's weight of evil shall see it.
and the other one
AL-QARIA (THE CALAMITY, THE STUNNING BLOW, THE DISASTER
Total Verses: 11
Revealed At: MAKKA
In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
YUSUFALI: The (Day) of Noise and Clamour:
PICKTHAL: The Calamity!
SHAKIR: The terrible calamity!
YUSUFALI: What is the (Day) of Noise and Clamour?
PICKTHAL: What is the Calamity?
SHAKIR: What is the terrible calamity!
YUSUFALI: And what will explain to thee what the (Day) of Noise and Clamour is?
PICKTHAL: Ah, what will convey unto thee what the Calamity is!
SHAKIR: And what will make you comprehend what the terrible calamity is?
YUSUFALI: (It is) a Day whereon men will be like moths scattered about,
PICKTHAL: A day wherein mankind will be as thickly-scattered moths
SHAKIR: The day on which men shall be as scattered moths,
YUSUFALI: And the mountains will be like carded wool.
PICKTHAL: And the mountains will become as carded wool.
SHAKIR: And the mountains shall be as loosened wool.
YUSUFALI: Then, he whose balance (of good deeds) will be (found) heavy,
PICKTHAL: Then, as for him whose scales are heavy (with good works),
SHAKIR: Then as for him whose measure of good deeds is heavy,
YUSUFALI: Will be in a life of good pleasure and satisfaction.
PICKTHAL: He will live a pleasant life.
SHAKIR: He shall live a pleasant life.
YUSUFALI: But he whose balance (of good deeds) will be (found) light,-
PICKTHAL: But as for him whose scales are light,
SHAKIR: And as for him whose measure of good deeds is light,
YUSUFALI: Will have his home in a (bottomless) Pit.
PICKTHAL: A bereft and Hungry One will be his mother,
SHAKIR: His abode shall be the abyss.
YUSUFALI: And what will explain to thee what this is?
PICKTHAL: Ah, what will convey unto thee what she is! -
SHAKIR: And what will make you know what it is?
here are some facts:
- more than 60 people attended the party.... it was a huge party in all aspects, food items, people attending, arrangement everything...
- the main items on the menu are
- satay ayam, a malaysian delicacy... its specially spiced barbequed chicken, served with peanut sauce, cucumber, rice cubes and onions. (we had to be content with frying the chicken, thanks to the weather)
[this ws the hit item of the day, with not even one stick left.... (well, imad vai and i cut the chiken, stuck the chicken cubes into the satay stick, and did most of the manual job...) no wonder!!!]
- special bangladeshi mutton haleem, prepared by our master chef jubayer vai. ten kilos of mutton and 15 kilos of dal put together and the result was three gigantic pots of haleem. There was so much leftover that everyone who helped with the cleaning up were awarded with two packs of haleem to take home. the haleem tasted excellent and was a great hit too.... but three HUGE pots of haleem for sixty people is a bit too much, especially when its just one of the numerous items on the menu.
- biriyani, brought by uncle and anuntie ijaz, a Pakistani who has been living in aalborg for the last 40 yrs.
- mee hoon (malaysian noodles)
- the dessert items (which outnumbered the main dishes)
- ailin vabis excellent coffee cake with chocolate cream
- ijaz aunties cream cake
- kalojam (sweets) [made by padmaja]
- gajor ka halwa (carrot halwa) [by sonja]
- turkish halwa [brought by basak]
- moroccan dessert [by hanan] (i didnt get to taste it, since i was late to start eating)
- and lst but not least, the borhani by jubayer vai.
for me it was a great party and a very interesting evening with lots of socializing... (a very tiring one too... with a lot of work)
most of Imad vais frends, vabis frens, muslims students of aau, and jubayer vais and my frens were there... and ofcourse some of akif frends got invited too....
akif is the one who had the most fun, as he was enjoying the whole evening with all the kids... he was so engrossed with his frends that he didnt hav the time to even look at his parents or any of the guests.....
i was at imad vais place from previous day morning, helping with the preparation work: shopping, chopping, cleaning and .... it was a whole load of work. after the dinner evening, i was so tired, i got back home (past 12 midnight) and dumped myself to straight to bed. when i opened my eyes the next morning, it was 8 am (the attempts of both 6 am and 7 am alarm, in waking me up went futile)
so, for those of you who didnt have so great a eid.... i am sorry.... afsos koro na bechara ra... better luck next time guys and gals.
finally... the women and men behind the scenes:
Director: Ailin vabi
Chief chef: Jubayer vai
Producer: Imad vai
sharbik tottabodayne (overall management): Akif Rahman (he was the chief satay tester)
many of our frends helped with the arangements before and cleaning up after the dinner...
lastly, as usual, you can see the pictures at ailin vabis photogallery.... (i am yet to get myself a camera)
Today was the first of syawal 1426 Hijri in this little town of aalborg as in most other parts of the world, and for Muslims this is one of the grandest of the year, Eid al Fitr.
Being the first ever of my eid in a country where Eid is pretty much unknown, i was quite skeptical about what to expect. Good thing though that I knew i wouldnt hv to run for lectures after the eid prayers. but it indeed turned out to be great... even better than some of the Eids I hav had in Malaysia, a country where Aidil Fitri is thebiggest festival.
Back home, Eid is closely related to food (and subsequently stomach problems)... this is exactly what this day was for me. food, food and food; Beginning with the little breakfast of cookies and halwa at the mosque right after the solat fajr till returning home after a full and heavy dinner at 10 in the evening. Students who have been here for a year, our mid-level seniors, decided to throw a eid party after eid prayers. it was supposed to be some sweet dishes followed by LIGHT lunch. So, immediately after eid prayers, we headed for the party venue. we had an hour for the party bells to ring, so to pass time yusuf decided to treat us with our 'introduction to the food session' episode with some chocolate cakes (danishes favourite cake) and some drinks. the eating spree that started with this cakes at 10 am, was finally drawn to a close with my favourite tea at 3 pm. By the way, the menu of the LIGHT lunch was beef, tnadoori chicken, doi bora, beef chop, vegetables, salad. did i forget the biriyani!!! so much for the light lunch.
However I was volunteered (the consent was taken afterwards...) to be the dishwasher for the event. hmmm my fame as a dishwasher is spreading now, and from the BD region, it has expanded to sub-continent region. not bad!!!
Lunch was organised at the local mosque too... and after asr prayers, i had to escape my way out, fearing I may hv to once again join in for some 'light' lunch.
after all the heavy food, i had to get down to work... my designated job, the dishwashing.... nothing comes for free!!! kabikha (kajer binimoye khaddo)
well, if you are thinking i wasnt at Imad vais place today, you are wrong. How could there be a occassion without something on at Imad vais place. there was still some place left in the corner of my not so little stomach, and the dishwashing ordeal widened that. enough room for a handsome dinner with some special food of ailin vabi, who loves to cook.
At the end of the day, when i sat down to write this piece, I was judging today with the eids back in Malaysia, and this indeed was as good or even better I would say, than those. thanks to all for the great day.... may this joy spread out to all of us, our family and everyone around us.
the whole album of that days pictures can be seen here (courtesy of ailin vabi)
i hav some set of personal sayings and one of the favorites on the list is 'plans are plans, its never meant to work...'
we had a long weekend with two following days off for autumn holidays. as usual, that meant a long list of to do's and a tediously worked out plan with the promise to catch up on the studies that i have fallen far behind in.
with full vigor and excitement, i embrace saturday morning... and to start it well, the dawn nap was skipped for the day.
then i spend the whole morning with the top most priority of the to do list, and that was to create a to do list and a planner for this semester (background info: (i) the to do list was there somewhere at the back of my ever forgetful mind, just had to put it to form through the keyboard... (ii) its a one and a half month into the semester and for the first time, i hav had time to work on the semester planner... [but... better late than never!!!])
with that done, i was about to embark on the implementation phase of these MARVELOUS plans... but all of a sudden, everything turned sour. my laptop just started restarting itself and i couldnt switch it on later... there were all this weird messages with a weird blue screen with loads of useless suggestion... at that moment, i was cursing myself for not installing LINUX, which i had planned to some long time back... ("real men uses LINUX..." thats an excerpt from one of my text books)......
the rest of the weekend was well spend trying to fix the thing and ended up reinstalling XP. and that means all the software i had installed are gone now and i am actually still in the process of reinstalling ALL of them... (thats a easy job, the difficult part is collecting all the softwares from different ppl..)
[I think i am joining the LINUX USER GROUP soon... (but given my usual "quick" implementation of my plans.... i wonder how 'soon' is this soon) ]
and with so much work done in two long days... i treated myself to a well deserved rest for the next two days.... voila... and this morning, i woke up with the usual dilemma.. to go or not to go (to the lecture at wee hours of the morning)...
godmorgen verden (good morning world [danish])
but it didnt end there... after the report, we had to a seminar on it this friday
so finally with that over, i would be running out of excuses (to myself) for not being in touch with ALL the ppl that i need to be in touch with. and that leaves me no option but to declare tomorrow as mail day.
oh by the way...i almost forgot. i stumbled across my friend's wife's fotopage on the internet and boy!!! it was filled with her (of course his too) wedding pics. look at the WIDE smile on the face of this young happy man
dilli ka laddu, kaile-o postba, na kaile-o postaba...
well, i think better go to bed now. hv to wake up in a few hours time.. to eat sehri, the predawn meal for fasting
this is a kirlian photo of a ear...
this phenomenon is not only limited to humans... even plants 'generate' this auras...
hmmmm.... odd world ...
my friend (http://tanm.blogspot.com) is an active blogger and he inspired me into this thing... but being the self claimed laziest person on earth, the adventure fell apart after three attempts. (i believe the optimists would say "something is better than nothing")... but ofcourse, that was when i was working and the office was my FIRST home (not going to office on weekends used to make me feel guilty)
Now that i am once again a student, i thought being a bit more active blogger wouldnt be that bad after all...
so here i go... welcome back to myself
By the way... i am now living in aalborg, denmark... but being a chittagongian, i didnt want to change the location.... to know more about aalborg and why i am here, revisit this blog in a few days....
till then, adios