The Feminine Code- Change Starts From Within.

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, we dedicate a whole month to women who are choosing to change themselves one step at a time. We are going to- ‘Be the change we wish to see in the world’. So here we go forming our own set of rules. For me the first one that encompasses all others-

Be Kinder To Your Own Kind- I would want to start by being nicer to other women.

For my views on the female code read the last paragraph of this post -https://a100reflections.wordpress.com/2015/02/08/in-response/

Arshi

Arshiya

Arshi

 

At home in Ballimaran.

At home in Ballimaran.

 

I never enjoy getting on a plane. If I can, I always prefer driving, to my chosen destination. But driving to Kashmir during the floods was not an option. It was on my flight back to Delhi from Srinagar on the 14th of September, last year that I met her. Arshi was a bubbly, seventeen year old, Dilli 6 ki ladki, who spoke nineteen to a dozen-about the floods and about herself. Being the youngest of six siblings, she knew how to hold my attention. I soon became ‘aapi’ and of course, I was totally enamoured by her charm. After all, she loved Ghalib, too. 

Recently, I caught up with my little spitfire at her home in Chandni Chowk and strolled through Old Delhi. Here, are excerpts from the conversation.

Do you feel pressurized to wear a hijab?

No! It’s my wish.

When you step out of Chandni Chowk, do you ever find people staring at you?

Yes, but it doesn’t make me a difference.

What do wish for young Muslim girls, such as yourself?

First, we should be independent. We should be allowed to speak our minds, freely not only at home but outside, as well.

Do you consider yourself to be independent?

Yes! I do. Mein kissi ke dabaav mein nahin aati. I move freely. I do what pleases me but I try to be good.

Can you tell me about your experience during the floods in Kashmir?

I was really excited to visit Kashmir. There was a family wedding in Srinagar and my sister and I reached there on the 1st of September. The wedding got over on the 4th of September and on the 5th the area, Batmaloo started submerging in water. We were evacuated from smaller houses and moved to taller buildings.  It was very difficult to get through the night. There was no electricity and it was really cold. Hum bahut pareshaan the lekin, Allah se dua karte rahein. Then Allah helped us and after a few days we returned home.

Did the neighbours help?

Yes, the roofs were connected with planks, so first we shifted to a neighbours house and then as the water receded we moved back to our relatives. When it had receded to our waist level, we walked through it and caught a flight back to Delhi.

What do you like to do?

Mein speech me sabse aage hun. I participate in a lot of debates and competitions. I have many participation certificates and have won many prizes. I love to dance and my teachers love me because I am freedom.

Plus, you love reciting poetry. Do you want to recite something?

Yes! I love poetry. Hame kyaa maloom tha zindagi itni anmol he dosto. Kafan odh kar dekha to nafrat karne wale bhi ro rahe the.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Epiphany

A little while ago, I contemplated discontinuing the monologue section of this blog. Actually, it’s not really a section yet- it will eventually become one. I was in process of forming it, therefore, none of those posts were being shared on other platforms. But I chickened out…just for a little while. It’s easier talking about this, that and the other: rather than what one is or probably feels in the present moment. I’m unusually frail and hypersensitive these days.
One would have made a great case study for Walter Cannon. Bypassing my rational mind, with my impulses quickened  and going into Fight or Flight Mode is a usual occurrence. But that can not remain my modus operandi. It’s eventually, going to become counterproductive. Didion said that writing is an ‘aggressive, hostile act’. How can one surpass the chance to impose oneself?
 This one goes out to the people who are kind enough to search for this blog, to read my personal thoughts. The things I couldn’t understand myself, I tried to explain to others! So I guess, it’s no longer just about the city I live in and the people I meet. It’s slowly becoming about my gypsy soul, the ‘Being’ in transit. Thank you I’m flattered.

 

“Dekha hua sa kuch hai,
Socha hua sa kuch
Har waqt uljha hua sa
Mere saath  hai kuch.
Hota hai yun bhi raasta
Khulta nahi kahin,
Jangal sa phail jaata hai
Khoya hua sa kuch.
Sahil ki geeli ret par
Bachchon ke khel sa
Har lamha mujh mein banta
Bikharta hua sa kuch.
Fursat ne aaj ghar ko sajaya
Kuch is tarah,
Har shay mein muskurata hai
Rota hua sa kuch.
Dhundli si ek yaad kisi
Qabr ka diya,
Aur mere aas paas
Chamakta hua sa kuch.
Kabhie kabhie yun bhi
Apne jee ko bahlaaya hai,
Jin bantoon ko khudd nahin samjhe
Auro ko samjhaya hai.”-Nida Fazli