Sunday, February 27, 2011

Post Duty Syndrome

I've spent 3 days in a row at the hospital. The long hours at work had totally worn me out …when I finally got home yesterday, I did nothing but sleeping …. Although I promised myself that I will make it a habit to read before I go to sleep but the moment I got to bed that night I turned off the light and welcomed the languid slide of unconsciousness …
The next morning I woke up at the sound of muezzin but couldn’t really get up…I was still so tired, every inch of my body aches - up until now -so I went to sleep again …
'Wake up Danu  ...'
'Mom I'm so tired'
'Its 4 pm if I knew that you would be sleeping all day, I would've never left you the car ....I told you to go and check on your grandma … she's still sick  ... my guess is you haven’t call her either …'
And before I even have the chance to stand for myself
'You know you should start rearranging your schedule for …..'
'Ok, ok I'm fully awake now'
I prayed and went back to sleep again. Then my sister woke me up 2 hours later, so I thought maybe I can go online for a while but after deactivating my Facebook account ,well there's not so much left that  kills time as effectively .  So after I post this, I will go to sleep once again …hopefully tomorrow I'll get up early and start doing what not-dead people do besides breathing.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Has everyone gone completely mad or is it just my family?!

'You are not going' she said it as it’s a confirmed statement
'Its not fair mom I wanna be part of it'
'Darling demonstrations in Baghdad !!! like we need more instability! My daughter is so not going'
'Gosh it's not just for me mom… this is for the whole country our solidarity is going to work …come on'
'Protesting is not for you it's meant for jobless people …you have work !'
'Come on …you know it's not only about that '
She didn’t have much to say back but the answer was still NO
'I gonna tell dad'
'He won't agree'
And he didn’t indeed
'Fine then I 'm taking double shifts at the emergency on the 25th  feb'
'Isn’t it your day off?'
'I'm taking double shifts… that's the least you guys can do for me? Think about it… there is a good chance that its going to be a blood bath'
'So you know …listen this country had collapsed totally long time ago…you won't be able change a thing'
At this point I just realized that it'd have probably worked better if I was talking to a wall! I totally gave up on them ….
But, to my surprise, later that day…..
'Hey mom'
'Listen we thought  about it and you can take double shifts  on the 25th but take good care of yourself ,promise?'…
'I will'
 I honestly don’t know when they gonna start seeing me as an adult! I mean people trust me with their own lives …the only guys who don’t is my own parents!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Egypt awakes to a new dawn and era

It has taken 30 years for the storm surge to break over Egypt, but when it finally did the voices of change proved so powerful, sweeping away Mubarak in just 18 days of peaceful street protests.
I've been fortunate enough  to stay in touch with quite a few young Egyptian activists during the protests … a couple of them stayed in the streets for days, holding placards and chanting slogans demanding  the 'removal of the regime'…..
I was skyping with one of them on the 16th  day of the revolution... the guy, 25 year old dentist, who was camping with his colleagues and a couple of university students in Tahrir square, he was so determined to keep on doing it until 'the people get the quality of  life they deserve' … 'where is all that power coming from?' I thought but never shared my question with him! because I know he would say 'years of oppression or an equivalent statement '  which probably would make sense if he was talking to his buddies from Europe not me! At least that what I wanted to believe otherwise agreeing to that  would make Iraqis even more stupid and chickens 'at least in my eyes' I mean how come my people agree to live in low standards for decades  under an oppressive regime and when they finally decided that they had enough ..they call upon Americans to  …well to mess with their country and just makes things worse ….just thinking that way was frustrating
The net connection was slow 'on both ends' and finally it disconnected… but for me I saw enough….
This 'people revolution'  gives me hope ,makes me more optimist ,makes proud of being an Arab…
However , being an Iraqi who'd lived her entire life in a 'war zone', it also concerns me; the next six months will be a testing time for all Egyptians  as the country will be under military power .
May god protect us all…

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Pardon Monsieur …

It was Tuesday , my French class day  … I know,I know some of you might be thinking what does French have to do with an Iraqi doctor; living in Baghdad with no plans to visit Paris anytime soon ?
Well to be honest …I have no clue!!  I like languages that’s something I know but why French in particular? Your guess is as good as mine!
If the roads aren’t blocked, it usually takes me about 45 min max to get there; but that Tuesday; unfortunately many were temporary blocked. Then I had to wait for about  30 min for a 'VIP cars to pass'…it was 3:00 pm and guess what my class starts at 3:00 …uhhh
I spent 90 min behind the wheel to get to my French class….. only to know it has been canceled
'Monsieur Hassan, why didn’t you inform me'
Well …. I 've just cancelled it because no one could make it to the institute . Check points are double checking these days and its taking people ages to get through….blabla'
'Cr*p'  I thought  ' traffic has been horrible in Baghdad for years now … we are used to being late …in fact , everybody is always late , what on earth has changed to make the entire class absent today?'
Of course that was me thinking what I said was  ' oh yeah, entirely true'
What I said to him wasn’t a lie but It's no surprise actually… if you are anywhere in Baghdad running late because of check points of the army, interior forces and other forces I can only tell apart by the different shades of green they're wearing and oh yea did I ever mention how useless they are …
Here's a scene from that same fine day!
'Pull over; we have orders to search all BMWs with a lady driving ! ' he said it with such a grin on his face like he'd just won a lottery or something
I wore a poker face but that didn’t cut it
… 3-4min later
'You can go now' and he was looking in all the wrong directions

Moral of today ' le francais ce n'est pas pour moi'

Monday, February 7, 2011

expecting too much

It was 20 min to midnight, when doctor karri, my substitute, showed up.  I can't say how much relief I felt when I saw him… there was still 20 min for my shift to end... I lost the lab coat I was wearing, grabbed my bag and was just about to leave when   ….
'Wait doctor…'
'Yea karri what's up?'
'The 4 car accident victims ..did you finish managing them ?'
'Karri , they've just arrived .. I took their vitals and sent them for x-rays …none is critical, you can deal with them, I need to leave now the curfew is about to start ? '
'You are going home , I thought you are going to stay at the doctors' residency'
Great just great I thought NOW is the perfect time for chitchat!
'But you received them ,complete their treatment and then go '
I said nothing at this point but my face said it all
'Or maybe you can write down their treatment and all and I'll take it from there '
'Ok that I'll do '
but what I really wanna say was 'why on earth did you show up early then?!!'
12:00 am …
'good morning, sorry I'm late'
'its ok .. I know my daughter …you just can't leave before the very end of your shift .. I won't take you calls seriously any more'
'No,no dad ,not ma fault ..this idiot ,karri ,told me he gonna come early  and let me loose , he didn’t' 
Well that was not entirely true, but i was too tired to tell the exact story
Moral of today's shift : don’t count on karri no more!