Turn Of The Day
S. She texted me around few months ago, before I headed to India actually, and said, “…when you’re back, I’ll invite you for a table Football game…”
Just like anything else, she always takes her time. Though I have some respect for her, I just hate it when someone lies or seems to lie. I don’t like to be lied to. But anyways, when R was back here few days ago, I met S probably after seven or eight months. There was some smirk around her face, I think it was there because she was embarrassed by the many times she told me “I will see you probably this week..”
Anyways, R and J planned a good day, a lunch for the three of us, but then S texted R and said that she would like to hangout with us, I was not really that excited, because frankly she talks all the time, it’s only her, I’ve had some bad memory of her ruining my birthdays and some other people’s parties and bdays by talking all the time, once everyone finished the dinner and it took her almost two hours to finish up all of what she was saying and then everyone brought my cake but by then I was sort of pissed off, anyways, the stuff that she mainly keeps talking about is the sort of stuff you here from a person with neurological disorder or probably psychological disorder. I did not want S to ruin our lunch since R was leaving the day after, and J and I didn’t have any other chance of getting together with her. Anyways, things did not go my way and S was in the planning.
So basically S sort of dramatically ruined the lunch. Two hours in and I could hardly keep my head atop the table, I drank copious amounts of tea to bear with what she was saying. She didn’t mind how much of disinterested I was showing myself to her talks, she just went on. It’s just that she’s a self-centered selfish person, to be honest every human being is selfish but to her’ extent – it’s just too much. She makes everything about herself. I have no idea why she has to share those stuff with us, as if we can help her. There’s a lot I could just keep going on about but it will ruin what I really have to say.
Then we all went bowling. Which she also ruined.
Then after finishing up with bowling, while waiting for her car, I asked so when is she going to invite me for a Table-top Football? She said, “How about this Friday?” I was like, “Oh really? Seriously?” and she was like, “Yeah, why not?”
So I took her seriously. Turns out she was. Normally it would be the same with her other instances of her saying she will do something but not eventually doing that something.
At the airport.
R left. Everyone said goodbyes. I saw S at the airport and confirmed the Friday planning.
One thing I didn’t know was in Friday, Modi was going to come to Kabul to inaugurate the new parliament building that the Indian government so proudly funded to build. So all the roads would be closed to the public such as myself. Especially my side; since the road to the new parliament is very near to the vicinity of where I live.
I texted to S. “…is it safe to move around the city today? I was getting ready to head towards your place but I thought I should ask first.”
In reply I got this, “…the roads might be totally closed. Specially your side.”
I knew that there was no chance of me risking myself to do something like that. To be honest, I thought it wouldn’t be worth it to risk myself for such a thing.
So I asked if we could reschedule for some other time.
Monday sounded good to S.
So Modi basically kind of ruined my plans for Friday.
Later that day, I asked someone else who was out and about around the city and he said: “I got stuck in traffic for around 2 hours just outside here. I thanked myself for not going outside and facing the same fate.
Praying that nothing else happens on Monday so I could go on with the plans.
I texted S and confirmed that she remembers that our ‘meeting’ happens the day after.
That night, I set an alarm for 7am of the next day.
I woke up just as the alarm rang.
I took a nice warm shower.
Back in my room, I opened Facebook only to find out just another suicide attack had happened somewhere near the HKIA (Hamid Karzai International Airport). I said the F word.
Texted S and asked if it’s “safe” to move around. She said that if I am comfortable then it should be fine and gave me a long spiel of how “we can’t stop living”. I kept saying, yes, I know what you mean, I know how it feels…but she kept me on the phone for at least ten minutes. I sort of felt tired for the day. Haha. No, I planned for this shit and I was not going to throw it all away by staying at home and feeling tired.
Didn’t have breakfast, although a couple of hours later, I found myself starving. I am the sort of person who’s usually shy for asking food (so if you see me starving and I say no, please ignore that and bring whatever food you have).
I called for the car.
The car came; and I happily sat inside the car hoping nothing bad would happen. Every single time wherever I go in Kabul, far or near, I always somehow pray that I safely get there and get back. I don’t really think it makes a difference though.
Along the way, I saw six ambulances passing by our car, probably carrying the victims of the morning’s suicide attack. I felt that that was enough for the day and felt like saying the driver to head back home. I was sick.
I thought long and hard (there were enough traffic jams along the way that gave me the time) about how unfair the world is. A couple of days before – I started reading this book about the human-evolution which sort of explains why humans act the way they act. A chapter of the book explained the likeness of chimpanzees to humans, and how the same as humans, chimpanzees also have a system which allows one to become the leader and they’re called the ‘alpha-male’; you might ask how one in a chimpanzee society becomes an alpha-male, well, it’s much like how we humans choose our own heads of the government (HELLO?! Campaigns?) now I was thinking about that book and how it resonated with this idea that few people on the throne of power controls the fate of a country like Afghanistan. I found how beyond everything this ‘war’ shows the selfishness of human beings. Honestly, I mean talk about all that ‘complications’ of the war and everything but there’s only one thing and that’s that humans are selfish and they desire for power and of course they envy those with power.
Anyways, along the way when I was thinking about all this, the car was passing by the infamous stadium where more than a decade ago, Taliban publicly executed a women for whatever reason I don’t remember now, and I murmerd something quite enough for the driver to hear, “…how long will this war continue?…” and what I heard was one of the best comparisions I have ever heard of; “It’s like Wadi-Gurga, you see how it never ends, someone has to kill someone else in the end…”. For your information, Wadi-Gurga is or was this Turkish mob-gang-mafia- TV show, quite similar to Godfather but Turkish.
I reached to S’s place. I called her and asked which apartement building/floor/number it is. I spoke to her on the phone for around five minutes, and still it sounded complicated as in the first place when I had no clue.
I took the next twenty minutes knocking on five strangers’ doors on three different buildings, and hearing the same response, “Who are you and what do you want?”. Oh no, Afghans aren’t really that welcoming when it’s a stranger knocking on their doors. If they don’t know you and you knock on their doors, accidentally or on purpose, they will talk to you as if you have an enemity with them.
I was thinking about just leaving when S called and asked, “Did you find it?”. I was about to flip out because when you invite someone for some reason, you also give them a good direction or at least if it’s confusing you don’t waste the time talking BS on the phone for like five minutes.
I overcame the urge of flipping out. I said, it would be better if she sends someone to get me from the ground floor. And that’s exactly what happened. And no I am not embarressed by not finding the place, no one should be if they don’t have a f’n clue where some place is (mind my language).
I had high expectations for the day. I was let down by the end of the day. I could have spent the day better myself.
I thought S was already there. But no she wasn’t there. Another rude thing to do really. It’s like…no it’s exactly how it happened: the host wasn’t there and I was left there like an idiot figuring what to do.
The kid was there, but he was boring as hell (I think even hell is interesting than him). I was sitting on the couch and had a cup of tea on the table in front of me, and this kid was starring at me from the corner of his eyes. And it was agonozing. Probably one of the most weird experiances I have had in my life.
Anyways I called S and asked where she is. I felt like leaving already because frankly it’s really rude and it’s not how you treat someone. She said, that she’s busy and have some work to do and will be there at lunch time.
I had to bear another hour and half of that kid giving me looks and all. I was about to leave when she was there.
I thought lunch was ready, I was kind of waiting for that too because I had nothing for breakfast because I had to leave early or I wouldn’t make it there in time for S. So I was basically starving.
I had to wait another one hour for lunch to be ready, it was around 1pm.
In the mean time S thought that we (herself, I and that kid) should watch a movie. The Minions. I thought okay, at least something will come out of me being here, I get to watch a movie at least. Minutes later, that kid spoiled the whole movie. Whenever in the movie something was about to happen, this phyco, hyper-active kid explained the whole scene and S didn’t mind it at all. I wasn’t saying anything to this kid, because I thought it wasn’t appropriate to teach manners to someone you don’t really know (oh how wrong had I been, please teach manners to anyone who don’t seem to have some).
There was some unflavored popcorn. I ate some because I was starving.
The food was ready. The kid paused the movie and said, “We’ll watch it after lunch!” I was like, what’s the point you dummy, you spoiled the whole movie by telling me what happens in the end.
The food wasn’t really disappointing. I will say that it was okay that at least it didn’t involve any sort of meat except fish. A day before S asked me what I would like for lunch. I said, “Anything vegetarian. Also seafood.”.
I had some Aashk and some fried fish. Though looking at the kid sitting in front of me and struggling with holding an Aashk with a fork was demonizing.
S said that after lunch she has a meeting somewhere and said that she will be back ‘soon’ (refer to this piece to see why I have a problem when people say ‘soon’).
Little did I know that I was going to leave totally disappointed at the end of the day. I spent the whole day losing round after round of tabletop-football to this kid.
When it was afternoon, long after S should have been back from her meeting, I called her and asked when is she coming. She said, “Oh, I am terribly sorry that I got hold up in this meeting, why don’t you play table-top football and stay for the dinner?” I was beginning to think that S was seriously trying to ruin my day.
Look, I mean I don’t really have ‘friends’ who are my age here in Kabul. You say why? Because I’ve had the experience of having some ‘friend’ who has often turned out to be immature or naive. I had this friend who joked about his fictional girlfriend all the time and always asked wether I had one. One day, I said, “It’s none of your business.”, since then, we haven’t talked much. So S pretty much knows that I wasn’t really enjoying being around some kid who gave me weird looks/ smiles all the time.
Then some people came to S’s place. They began taking turns playing the table-top football, and they were really good at it too. I was trying my best to hide myself somewhere so I wouldn’t have the chance of losing another round and embarrassing myself. Alas, the turn came to me, I was hesitant at the first thought of it and then I thought, “F it, I don’t care if I lose, they have been playing this game for a long time.” My expectation was to lose the game in the least embarrassing way. What happened was, my opponent, another weird kid, goaled himself five times and then goaled me ten times. So that was embarrassing. He was like, “Let me help you to at least score some goal for yourself.”
Then S came right after I lost the game. I was furious at the time.
Anyways, I spent the rest of the night feeling disappointed about my day.
When leaving, I said (in a sarcasting way), “I really had a good day, thank you!”
S didn’t get that note of sarcasm.
During the ride home, I thought about how one can easily be disappointed about something. I learned not to take people on their offer sometimes when it’s not worth it.