It hasn’t been easy to be at home with my mother again after all this long. This is the fourth time I see her since I moved to Europe in early 2015. My mother is the same every time we meet, yet she’s changed a lot. Some things never change about people, but they age. The war in Syria has made most of us age faster. Mom is now 70, although she looks more like 80. It broke my heart to see how old she’s grown since I last saw her two years ago.
It’s hard for me to meet my father without us getting into a useless and irritating argument these days. It’s been two years since we last met. I’ve seen him three times since I arrived in Damascus. Now I realize how easy it is to be at peace with him when I’m away. I can love him then, even more than my mother. But once I’m here, I must remind myself not to be mad at him. When I talk to dad, it feels like I’m talking to Sultan Abdelhamid, or even Hitler. And what do you know; the old man is apparently a fan of both.
As a child, I loved my father. We had a good relationship until he retired as a trade inspector in 2000. Up till that point, my father had had a remote positive influence on me. I knew him to be the mighty inspector who had survived 17 assassination attempts throughout a crusade against corruption. He was always very passionate about his job, having grown up with detective novels. Those he read at a little bookstore that my grandfather, Abdo senior, ran.Continue reading “The Supply Man”
When I was 12, my father told me that I was a fly and that the West was a heated light bulb. He told me that the sparkling object from a distance would burn me alive if I ever went there. I was a rebel. I never listened. I installed a VPN software to access social media. I learned English on my own. I spent most of the following 15 years trying to come to the West.Continue reading “We each suck in a different way”
Six weeks ago, Amazon contacted me, asking for my feedback on how to improve their services. Their email read the exact following:
Your comments and suggestions will help us improve our store and offer better service to our customers. We are concerned about the activity on your account. We want to do all that we can to prevent you from having to make frequent returns of items from Amazon.de.Continue reading “Climbing Down the Tower of Babel”
I’m 31 years old; yet, only a few months ago, I learned how to cut an onion. It was as if I discovered fire. This might not sound much to most people, but for the first time in my whole life, I knew how to prepare food.Continue reading “Life in an Onion”