have you ever witnessed a butcher at work? this morning i was out to get some gorceries and went to a butcher’s shop and placed an order, and while he prepared the meat, i stood there with arms folded and looked on in astonishment as he began his craft on a whole skinned sheep hanging from its two rear limbs and soon dismembered it, knowing exactly where to hack with the axe, where to slice with the knife, what to throw out, what to keep in, where the joints were, where the least resistance was offered to the knife. experienced butchers must be among the most knowledgeable folks around with the physiology and anatomy of mammals. and to behold the precision with which they can bring down the axe a half inch away from their fingers holding the meat, and how costly any mistake could be (usually reaffirmed in the case of many butchers by a stub of a finger.) and all of this with such economy of force and efficiency of every movement. i have been party to the slaughter and dismemberment of livestock before and it can take inexperienced people five times the work, time, and bloodied hands and clothes to do the work that an experienced butcher can do in just ten minutes.

* * *

also this early morning s and i went to the qabristan by the mountainside to pay a visit. she cooked some halwa too and on the way we picked a carefully chosen number of breads. like i always do i sat there at the foot of the grave and surveyed the city overhang by a mix of fog and early morning mist illuminated by blinding sunlight, and tracing all the routes i took as a child to go to kindergarten, primary school, my grandparents’ home, and to get to othe little icecream parlor, often accompanied by this woman who now lay under piles of dirt beneath this engraved marble monument. s distributed the halwa carefully placed on pieces of bread and handed over to keen children. then a woman and two little kids came -i had never seen her before- and asked me if this was her grave, mentioning her name. i never used that name as the word usually was madar around the house, but knew that it was her, and nodded. she sat there, wept her heart silently out, and then moved on without any words.

* * *

then all this afternoon i have been again in office working away on 3 documents that need to be finalized in 3 days and it will be a miracle if they are. there is a team of 10 hacking away on different segments of it, and they come from all over the place. which is why i am foregoing a birthday party at home, s leaving tomorrow, and a much needed friday weekend for the sheer joy of being here…

* * *

and did i say it was my birthday today? 31st of july? i am nearly a quarter century old now.
earlier when we were visiting her grave, s told me that twenty something years ago this must have been one of the happiest days of her life. her first child. her first son. and the incalculable joy of it all. two nights ago i dreamt her. i opened a door and there she stood, beautiful and kind as ever. i was so happy. i really really believed it was true though with most dreams i have a sense that they are dreams even as i dream them. i was having a moment of temporary, voluntary suspension of disbelief i guess.


~ by safrang on July 31, 2009.

5 Responses to “friday”

  1. do u hv any idea what s means by saying those? she is like: hey, lets hv a baby! or she juz wanna show that she loves hving a child, at least.

  2. A late happy birthday Mr Hamesha! I used to read your blog with the vice of a 40 years old man in my head. now I got surprised finding out you are 25. You think and write more mature then your age. Hamesha’s blog is wonderful.

  3. Happy Birthday Hamesha… Live long and happy

  4. When one of my colleagues in Bosnia turned 25, his coworkers threw him a little at-work party in the cafe below the office. As he opened his presents with all of us gathered around, my colleague sighed with melodramatic resignation, “Well, I have reached the half-way point in my life.” My 58 year old boss promptly smacked him. “What does that make me? Eight years past dead?”

  5. Happy birthday, and here’s to at least 75 more. 😀

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