Saturday, August 11, 2007


Whoa - nothing like a long road trip to tirgger a major migrane. My parents decided to visit Taif and a couple of villages close by, infamous for their 'barshoomy' (I'm at loss for the english name, but it's a fruit, prolly from the cactus familia). I finished the last pages of the book I was reading exactly 10 minutes into the trip (the whole thing was around 4 and a half hours). The trip wasn't that bad, the weather was actually decent, only it was..long. I guess it reminded me of the long way to uni. Maybe I can't stand road trips because of the uni! When I remember how I planned to read, listen to a tape, or kill time with my DS, on my way to uni and back home, I just feel like laughing at my naivete, so to speak. I mean, I had an 8-4 or 8-3 workday almost all last year, and to make things worse, I had to get out of the house by 6.40 latest to get a trucks-free passage to uni through the dxb bypass road. I'd spend the way to university trying to wake up, yep all 40 or 50 or 60 minutes of the way, depending on the traffic. The way back was usually spent in trying to order my arms to reach out and get my mobile out of the bag, because someone was phoning. I usually reached my mobile during the second time the person phoned; to me everything was happening in slow motion, and thus my body moved in eextrreeemely slow motion as well. I'm not complaining or whining, I'm just thankful I don't have to drive there every single day and back.
Now, don't you wish there was some sort of gadget that you could wear on your head or hands, and that would read the words you want to write and just write them for you? It would work as fast as your mind can think, and type everything down for you. Eh, I know I've always wished for that - sometimes I'd get an idea when I'm in the car or when I don't have any computer access. Writing with a pen and pencil is well, slow and I usually forget half the things by the time I finish scribbling my first sentence. Yes, I know that sounds bad - I'm lazy and getting even lazier and horribly spoilt by technology.
So the book I was reading is called 'Suite Francaise', I had gotten it several weeks ago, at the beginning of the summer but it lay untouched with a couple of other new books I had gotten. As I was trying to decide which books to get with me here, I picked Irene's book along a couple of others. I just finished it today; it was hard to get into, but once the first couple of chapters are over you'll find yourself bewitched by it. It unfolds like a movie, and what makes it even more theater-like is the many prespectives of the same thing you get to view. The author was killed by the germans before she had the chance to finish her book. She had intended it to be made of five parts, but she only got the chance to write the first two. There were a lot of interesting insights in the book about that war in particular (the second world war); a lot of things that could be said about any other war. It made me think of Palestine, of Iraq. War is war, almost the same, in every century: the piece of land is different, the reasons different. The ones that start the war it seems, are the ones that don't get hurt. At least, that's whats been happening in the last couple of wars. I wish we had taken this stuff in my history classes, instead of having to study the history of the kingdom for three years. When things get repetitive you just tune out, and anyway, it was never taught or learnt with much gusto. I wish we had taken a region every year and learnt in depth, gone to museums, seen things, read their literature, gotten to know the people of that region in a way. Sort of like my humanities class in univeristy. Having to memorize dates of birth, death, wars and truces; listing reasons, consequences and outcomes of events - sure, history is a lot to do with past, but we dont have to learn it in such a dead, boring way. History can be alive and fun. But trust our education system to kill even that.
I'm starving, will go order some food.