Emad's Blog (Under Renovation)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thoughtful and disconnected..

Funny enough, as one would expect, I had to go back to pick up my passport from the High Commission of Pakistan.

Leaving office at 2pm on a Tuesday is hard work, but one has to believe you do it for the important things. Like your passport.

Long story short, I got there and there was a sign on the door -

Circular
The Pakistan High Commission will be closed on 15th Feb 2011 on account of Eid Milad-un-Nabi.

First response: Panic!

Had I missed Eid?! Every year, twice a year, I had craftily managed to figure out Eid dates while being away from home in order to ensure that phone call was made and the ones received were not met with overt surprise. Now I'd really outdone myself.

But wait, which was the Milad-dun-Nabi one? I mean there's the bakra eid and the.. eid eid.

Second response: Self-loathing

What an idiot! It's the other name for 'bara rabi ul awal' right? Prophet's b'day and all. Phew! Close call.

Third response: Reflection

After having already vented on Twitter after my first response, I got an @reply from another overseas Pakistani. I could tell he was in my first response mode too. While I replied to him, I couldn't help but think.. damn.. how awful is this?

Ever since I learnt to think for myself, and stumbled upon the thought that I knew best, I had embarked on a journey of distancing myself from traditions in general and those I'd grown up with, in particular.

I do wonder now, whether this was just a step too far. Recently, while I find it hard to connect to these traditions when faced by them, I can feel a bit of envy creeping against those that whole-heartedly immerse themselves in them and have managed to preserve and grow them in their immediate surrounding.

With the trajectory I'm on, there's a real chance this connection will fade further, but while there's still a flicker, I thought I might as well acknowledge is and at the very least give it some due respect.

Confused; alienated; defiant.

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