My favourite things

When the dog bites,

When the bee stings,

When I'm feeling sad,

I simply remember my favorite things,

And then I don't feel, so bad.

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens

Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens

Brown paper packages tied up with string,

These are a few of my favorite things.

Cream coloured ponies and crisp apple strudel,

Door bells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles

Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings,

These are a few of my favorite things.

Girls in white dresses and blue satin sashes,

Snow-flakes that stay on my nose and eye-lashes,

Silver white win-ters that melt into spring,

These are a few of my favorite things,


Babies that smile and children that sing

Hot Chocolate in winter and friends that remember

Rain in the summer and puppies with fur

A single feather flying away

Fields of daisies and poppies swaying in tune with the wind

These are just a few of my favourite things

Kolena Laila: Sorry

Part of the Kolena Laila day.

I had an attack attack last night at 2 am.

What if it happened to me?

What brought it on was something my aunt had mentioned earlier about the mass sexual harassment that happened this eid (again). She was giving the recount of the girl (victim) that had fled the scene and what the monsters had done to her and how she’d gotten away (I have no name for them other than monsters that have been stripped of their humanity to say the least)

As usual I had neatly folded feelings that had surged through me and put it away at the farthest corner of my mind. I really didn’t want to think about it or talk about it with anyone ….not even myself …my subconscious is unfortunately a lot smarter and stronger than my conscious mind

All I could think of is what are we to do as young women? Working living and moving around in Egypt (since we are always the first to be blamed for harassment) I asked myself this question although almost 60 % of women in Egypt are veiled why has that not stopped the monsters? Some of the victims were actually wearing niqab. Why? Why? Why? I feel like banging my head against a wall why is it even an issue what a girl is wearing?

There is a major human rights violation happening in my own backyard and I’m even considering remotely that it might be the women’s fault; shame on me.

I’m sorry I’m confused and sad and angry and afraid for me and for all the girls around me. My friends my family, the girls I don’t know walking on the streets minding their own business

Is it wrong that the girls (victims) refuse to come forward and report? What would I do (God forbid this happen to anyone) would I come forward? Would I stand up for my right and fight for justice and protecting others from the same ill fate? Would I run away? Would I want to die on the spot?

I hate to think about it, but I’d definitely run away I wouldn’t be able to face it or risk it I’d run as far away as I could from everything and anyone I’d leave my life behind I’d burn all the bridges and start anew hoping I wouldn’t ever have to face it again.

Now I can’t help thinking about Youssra and the Ramadan series last year “A case of public opinion” (kadeyet ra2y 3am). I personally thought she was over doing it at the time but now I see her in a new light with more respect she was making a point she was talking about the big bad black wolf long before we even acknowledged it’s existence maybe we should talk about these issues maybe the girls should step forward maybe we should learn to protect them as a society

Maybe it’s not such a bad thing to demand to be able to carry weapons for our own protection why not carry mace and spray it at aggressors why not carry stunt guns why are they illegal?? They only paralyze for a few minutes they don’t cause any permanent damage why aren’t women allowed with permits to carry them? Is this what we should be demanding or should we be demanding protection from the government? Does the government have the resources to protect us from the every day harassment happening on our streets?

And what in God’s name possesses these “things” to harass women in bulk?? I still can’t believe that such a large group of men would randomly meet and simultaneously agree and act on such an unethical, immoral and not to mention illegal act. For what?  For some kicks?

I think of them and I’m speechless
My heart is breaking for all those girls I’m sorry to all of you we talk about you we blame you we wonder about you we wish we never have to be you but we never say it…we are sorry .

I’m sorry.

When I grow up.........

When I was a little girl and people would ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up I would usually say one of two things (I’m a Libra and if you know any Librans you will know that a Libra will always give you two complete opposite answers to any given question that will both make perfectly good sense)

The first one was the typical “I want to be a mommy” answer, of course everyone knows that girls will keep saying that thinking it’s a lovely little pet that loves them unconditionally and that will laugh when they press it’s stomach and say “Mamma I love you” when they hug it.

Of course we only realize that’s only true of our baby born dolls when we actually have kids of our own! (Then it’s too late to give it away or take it back to the store)!!!!

The second answer was “I want to own a supermarket” just get one thing straight I was not a greedy baby but I always used to be in so much awe that you could go into one store and find anything you could possibly need or want (men el ebra lel sarookh), mind you I didn’t know they were called hypermarkets or department stores at the time they were just gigenormous supermarkets to me

I’ll tell you the story of the day I decided I wanted to actually own one of these “big supermarkets” and not just buy everything there

Like any kid born in the eighties my parents babysitter of choice was sometimes the TV and again for a kid in the eighties TV was the biggest technology hit yet (pacman came later) not only that but the things that we watched on TV weren’t just very closely monitored by everyone within a 200 mile radius including our parents, grandparents, nanny and doorman, there wasn’t much variety to watch in the first place

So one sunny afternoon watching one of my favorite shows “woof” about a little boy named Eric who would spontaneously change into a dog to go save the world the particular episode that day was that he was out in town and then went into a department store turned into a dog and spent the night in the store after they’d closed

Of course he had turned back into a boy and had a blast, jumping on all the king sized beds, eating all the chocolate bars he could eat and playing with all the action figures he could get his hands on needless to say I have not been able to get over the idea of owning a supermarket thinking I could live there at night and reek havoc in all the departments ;-)

Now I’m all grown up and sadly realized that’s not how it works although I’m still convinced if I’m rich enough to own a hypermarket I can do whatever the heck I want .

Over the years the supermarket thing evolved into other things , when I was eight I wanted to be a ventriloquist (which is basically throwing ur voice which is basically making a puppet seem like their talking without you moving your lips) after realizing how hard it was I decided I liked opera singing (I had no idea it was Italian and I totally believed I could get away with singing anything I pleased) that’s the period when I was completely obsessed with Pavarotti and my dad dubbed me “Pavarotti’s cousin” I would practice with him whenever he was on TV which was almost every evening aaah well I kept practicing until our neighbors called the police thinking we were torturing the dog (we never actually had a dog bit if antone asks it was a golden retriever named pepsi)

When I was in middle school our playground faced the Faculty of engineering and at recess we could see the college students sitting on the huge steps of the grand campus with their T-rulers and street clothes (we wore grey uniforms need I say more) that’s when I decided I wanted to be an engineer

Then later in secondary school I entered a poetry reading contest and was asked to be in the school play and join the choir which I chickened out of cause I was a shy little kid that blushed everytime anyone so much as looked at me (yeah yeah I know hard to believe) that’s when I decided then and there I would become a writer so I could channel all my creative energy without having to actually interact with any human beings and that’s when I wrote my first thriller book that turned out a cross between Dr.Seuss’s “a cat in the hat” and “psycho” go figure (I WILL publish it someday if i can get someone to accept it)

If you’ve read up until here I’m sure you’re quite entertained but have no idea where the heck this story is going

Well to tell you the truth a few weeks ago after celebrating the third year at this job I was kind of pondering my life, my job and my dreams, and I was thinking was this what I wanted for myself growing up , was this part of my “Dream” don’t get me wrong I’m 24 years old have a perfectly good job and have a masters degree with honors I’m pretty lucky and I thank god everyday for what I have

But sometimes I wonder….

I’m sure a lot of people will agree with me real life isn’t all what we expected ; the dead end desk jobs, the fights at work and the monotony of it all , none of us expected the friends moving away , the love stories dying and not being the center of the universe or at least mattering to the universe

So instead of going on prozac the annoying optimist in me( and because I love making top ten lists) I decided to make a list of the ten jobs I would love to do (even if they ARE physically impossible) Here goes:

1.Opera singer (I’m going to make up a new opera in Arabic ) so not only will I be an opera singer but also a pioneer oooh and shaaban abd el rehem gets do the lyrics

2.Professional skateboarder: I just love watching them, the tricks, the flying in the air if that’s not having wings I sure hell don’t know what is!!! In addition to having a fun means of transport

3.Cartoon voice over: aaah my favorite dream job ever since I watched little mermaid! (I also wanted to be ariel but that’s kinda impossible because I don’t know where I can find Ursula so she can gimme fins)

4.Air France flight attendant : this is complicated one ok why a flight attendant is of course an easy question , you travel the world for free, you get paid a lot of money and when you tell people you’re a flight attendant you automatically become more interesting and a lot more prettier (if air France think your pretty enough everyone else will follow suit ;-) ….why air France specifically …they wear the prettiest coats in winter ahhhh I love uniforms they make ur life so much easier especially if they r really nice ones

5.Psychiatrist: you listen to people’s problems, you tell them what to do, and they pay you lotsa money …. Perfect job…and the best perk is you can act really crazy and people will just say poor thing such a stressful job the patients must be really getting to her

6.CIA undercover agent: heheheh just saying it is funny (stick ‘em up!! Can a CIA undercover agent say that??)

7.Mystery shopper : I actually applied for this job and I’m waiting for an assignment ….coolest job ever you act like your shopping at all these brand name stores, assess the shop and the assistants then fill in a questionnaire and get paid …man this is so payback time for all the rude assistants!! ( but there is one thing…you can’t tell anyone so shhhhh)

8.Computer programmer : ( my sister’s job and I think she rocks) the mere idea of creating programs to do almost anything and everything in our everyday lives just turning 0’s and 1’s into things like an ATM machine program or a point of sales we never actually think about these things …that’s simply amazing (there’s also the hacking skill aspect cause I’m a nosy human being heh)

9.This one isn’t a job but I would just love to be an “ oprah’s favourite things show”

10.Last but not least I really still wish I could write professionally but I’m still feeling my way … someday I hope

Enjoy and please share below what you want to be when YOU grow up *evil grin*…..

The big bad black wolf

Slowly very slowly it crawled into my existence I hardly noticed or maybe I chose to simply ignore the shadowy existence…after all it’s just a harmless shadow, what’s a shadow in the darkness…..

Deeper, darker, closer, faster, closer

Seeping deep into my pores I could almost touch IT…. the big bad black wolf.

Surreal was it’s black existence you couldn’t really tell was it real or was it a wild figment of my vivid imagination….then out of nowhere there…in my face sneering at me my pupils dilating more of disbelief than fear, my heart racing, and my palms sweating….

IT is real…it exists….the big bad black wolf

So close …so real.... IT’s big black eyes endless in their blackness …my mind wandered from its fear could this be the abyss? The bottomless pit? The gap between the real and the unreal? The difference between the ideal and the actual?….I was looking on into the black hole of nothingness …it beckoned me into the eerie blackness a strangely calming sense of quiet settled around me, I was being gently pulled in mmmmmm calm,serene,mine all mine ……!!!! Wrong!!! Not good!!! Alarm bells clanged in my head ….jerking back, my head pounding , my eyes focused slowly

I could see clearly now the big bad black wolf there was nothing calm or serene about IT, the eyes were no longer black they were enormous fiery blazes of deep red, his dark presence was large and foreboding his fangs large and jagged pearly and gleaming

Jeering at me, challenging me to come in, I dare you he silently beckoned, I know you want it, come into the darkness, loneliness can be your friend, grief your lover, sadness your very best companion, you will never be alone again, you will have me forever you needn’t fear lonely for it will be with you all the time….no no no!!! I screamed inside my head

I could see my reflection in his fangs … realization set in…could that be me?…no so small, so scared so possessed, that wasn’t me it couldn’t be me the cowered stance the petrified eyes no that wasn’t me I don’t like that me no no no go away I screwed my eyes shut wishing the big bad black wolf to disappear …cautiously I opened my eyes nope still there looming over me could I run? Why wasn’t I running, a magnetic pull overwhelmed me.

I Stayed

NO! I will not relent I will not go quietly I am strong I am hard I am big I am tall NO!
I straightened my back pulled my stomach in and puffed out my chest as far as they both could go the coward still inside me I was a little uncertain I little hesitant the great big red eyes stared at me sensing the change I stared back as hard as I could, still scared I was but IT didn’t need to know


Go away; Go away I am not afraid I am not afraid

Was IT getting smaller? Was IT getting weaker?

Go away; Go away I am not afraid I am not afraid

Was IT getting greyer? Was IT retreating?

I widened my eyes willing the energy out I will fight for my I will fight for the light you can not eat me you cannot beat me I am tall I am big I am strong I am a tower, a big strong tower a thousand feet tall and a thousand feet wide .
This is my substance this is what I am I am the light you are the dark
The light will always prevail and darkness will seize to exist

Finally after what felt like a lifetime I could feel the fire fizzle, the red turn to brown, and the jagged fangs blacken and break into brittle crumbs.

I was winning it would not take me

I am not afraid I am not afraid

The blackness resided ,the eyes blackened it was turning into nothing right there in front of my eyes the monster was dying …I killed it…. I killed it quietly from within …

I killed it with the curl of a baby’s hand around my finger, I killed it with the genuine hug from a friend, I killed it with seeing an old friend with a broad smile of recognition high on their face, I killed it with the first smell of spring, I killed it with the feel of sand and sea water between my toes and the salt breeze in my face, I killed it with my mother’s happy tears that I have blossomed into someone she is proud to call her own, I killed it with my sister’s hearty laugh….

I killed it

I killed it with love and pride and happiness

I killed it for me……….I killed it for us …all of us

Then and there with its last breath I could see it in the eyes a mere glimpse in a passing moment …..IT sees me, I see me in its eyes IT thinks ….no ….IT believes…. IT really believes that yes…dare I say it?? IT believes me it believes in me…IT believes that I am…

I am invincible

So are you

Loneliness and sadness can never be your friend

The big bad black wolf is within you…. never let it out

For Remember that you are…..Invincible


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