The Relationship between late night Television and Sandwiches

Written by Fatima Majoka

Toast a largish piece of bread with a slice of cheese until it starts melting, lay on a cutting of salami, add a crunchy salad leaf and cover it with a half fried egg sprinkled with a pinch of salt and pepper. Top everything with another piece of bread and press it gently until you hear the satisfying plop of the yolk breaking. Now bite into the contentment. Sip some soda in between the bites as you watch senseless late night television.

This had been my ultimate treat after I had put the kids to sleep, for years their bedtime ranged between ten pm to two am and I led myself on to put up with it by dreaming about this very moment. Of course most days I went to sleep while putting them to sleep or would be too tried to even sit on the sofa and some days there was nothing left in the refrigerator to make a sandwich out of! But the addiction to this, the moment of satisfaction, that bite into a big juicy sandwich was what mostly kept me going through. So much so that it became almost an addiction. I wanted to savor this feeling of elation every single day; it was my drug of choice. Cold chicken sandwiches, garlic mayo and leftover sandwiches, mince beef and cheese sandwiches and when there wasn’t anything else boiled eggs and tomato sandwiches. Needless to say I could whip up a sandwich anytime and from almost anything.

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Then quite dangerously I started buying foodstuff that complemented my sandwich addiction, I started getting DVDs to make my sandwiches worthwhile and drinking more and more soda to make everything last longer. So much was my ‘me’ time taking over my life that I would resent anything or anyone that came between us. I wanted to be home on weekend nights and even wanted my husband to go to sleep early so I could enjoy this time by myself. I dislike guests staying late and hated it if the kids got sick and I was too exhausted to stay up for my addiction.

At one point; around 20 pounds overweight and quite mentally deranged, I realized that this was becoming a very ‘unhealthy’ obsession. Late night high carb food and resenting your own family has its toll on your mind and body. I do enjoy my sandwiches but now I make them for picnics or weekend movie dinners with the kids. And yes I am much healthier, still a little obsessed but with healthier things now.

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Have you ever come across a victim of domestic abuse and thought to yourself, ‘Why she stayed?’

Silicon Valley CEO abused wife for 10 years, jailed for 30 days only

Yes, you read it correctly. Only 30 days.

And what angered me more was that the judge actually asked her why she stayed for so long?

And since I have read this, I have been thinking the same, why she stayed? She was an educated, independent woman who was an engineer at Apple. She should not have tolerated this abuse even for a day. How did she let it be for 10 years?

But is it really so easy to get out of abusive relationships?

Unfortunately, no. It’s not easy at all. It’s in fact, very difficult.

Abuse is very common, a lot more than we think. In fact, we overlook it most of the times. It’s something we don’t want to talk about, scared that people might be judgemental towards us. But by doing that we also make our loved ones feel that being a victim of abuse is something to be embarrassed about. Also, if the abuse is psychological, we often don’t pay heed at all.

Abusers have one goal in mind: to take (and mainten) control over the victim. To do so, they can choose any method: fear, intimidation or guilt to make sure the victim does not ask for help or try to get out of the situation.

All abusive relationships work in a cycle: the tension build up, the explosion and the honeymoon period. The explosion is the time when the abuse actually happens and can be triggered by something very petty and the honeymoon period is the time when the abuser pretends to act sweet and tries to win over the victim again. This is also the time when although the abuser apologises for his/her behaviour but also makes sure to tell the victim that it was only the victim’s actions that forced the abuser into committing that act. Victims of abuse over time loose confidence and start believing this lie slowly and gradually that it’s their fault to be in such a situation.

One of the many reasons why Neha Rastogi decided to stay with her abusive husband Abhishek Ghattani for 10 years. Because she loved him. And because she believed him when he told her that every time he abused her, it was her mistake.

But that’s not the only reason I must say. Victims often start doubting themselves: what if I will be unable to cope? What if he really will change just like he promised me last week? And things like this only make the victim fall deeper into the abyss.

And then of course the social stigma. Since childhood, girls are bombarded with the idea of them being the damsel in distress who would be saved by their knights in shining armour. They dream of their weddings and divorce is often seen as a failure of being a good wife and/or mother.

And then finally when a victim musters all the courage to actually take action, the judge asks her, “Why did you stay for so long?”

 

Protein Hair Treatment at Home

Written by Sumayya Feroz

Edited by Pragya Shrivastava

I have always put emphasis on finding alternatives for beauty treatments, which are both time and money consuming. So here is a protein treatment for hair which you can try at home.

INGREDIENTS:

EGG 1
HONEY 1 table spoon
ALMOND OIL 2 tablespoon
VITAMIN E CAPSULES 2
HOW TO USE: Whisk all the ingredients properly. Apply with fingers or brush on your hair from root to tip. After applying the mixture wrap your hair with a hot towel and a shower cap and leave it for 1-2 hours, now you can enjoy your popcorns while watching TV or finish your chores. After 2 hours wash your hair with shampoo of your choice. At the end of the shower, use a mixture of one table spoon of ACV (apple cider vinegar) in a big cup of tap water to rinse your hair.
RESULTS: As Mr. Egg is rich in proteins, amino acids etc., it will give your hair a nice smooth texture, but please be patient because home remedies take time.

You can repeat this home remedy in every 15 days but if your hair is damaged because of excess exposure to heat (blow dryers, straighteners, curlers) repeat this once in a week.

Finally , I want to share my thoughts on people getting very materialistic these days, running after the high end products whether they can afford it or not. Please for the sake of your peace don’t do this. If you cannot go to salon for facials or any other treatments don’t be depressed instead find alternative products and home treatments. And be thankful to your creator for you can even afford home treatments, you have an egg to apply on your face or hair where millions of people still don’t have anything to eat, so next time don’t be depressed when you see someone around using high end products.

Love you all, Sumayya

Sumayya is a microbiologist, who loves experimenting with beauty products and makes sure she looks and feels good even when she is short on time.

Singapore – From my eyes I

Those who know me personally, know quite well that I love and respect Singapore a lot. Although I am not a citizen myself, I find myself defending Singapore every where I go and with every one I speak to.

I first visited Singapore in 1995 as a tourist and while travelling back from Singapore I made a little innocent wish of being able to visit Singapore again. I never knew that I will get married to someone 4 years later who lives in here. I moved here in 2009 after I got married and 8 years later, its become home now. Yes, I love pakistan but I respect singapore deeply.

In this post I will only speak about cultural and religious freedom that I have here.

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Singapore is a multi cultural country with people of all religions living with harmony. It’s main languages are English, Chinese, Malay Bhasa and Tamil and the citizens comprise mainly  of Chinese, Malay and Indian origin. The main religions here are Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism and there people from all religions are allowed to practice their own religion in their own way as long as they do not interfere in any one else’s practices.

I have spent a chunk of my childhood in UAE and some time in UK for my studies. Although I have never really faced serious bullying in my life directed particularly towards me but I have been called ‘Bloody Paki’ and treated as an inferior muslim for being a pakistani Muslim rather than being an Arab. But a lot of people might be unaware but I’m protected by law in Singapore against such discriminations. No one can call me names due to the way I look (the color of my eyes, my hair or my height can’t be commented upon), I can roam around in shalwar kameez the whole day without being worried about someone being judgemental,  I can sue someone if their dog touches me (yes, this muslim sensitivity against dogs is highly regarded), halal food is readily available and I can even pray publicly in a park without being stared at. Also, the Muslim laws of marriage and inheritance are being looked upon by the Sharia courts of law.

And the best thing about living in Singapore is that we have lots of public holidays too: 2 each for each of the 4 main religions which also ensures that we do not have to worry about going to work on Eid day 🙂

* the beautiful picture of Sultan Masjid is not mine but taken off the Internet. Sultan Masjid might be the most famous masjid of Singapore as it’s a popular tourist destination but there are lots an lots of masjids and some of them very beautiful and majestic in terms of their architecture. The Islamic schools (medrasaa) are in abundance too masha Allah.

 

 

 

Yakeen ka safar (review) Episode 1

Post edited by Warda moeed Siddiqui

 

Written by: Farhat ishtiaq

Directed by: Shahzad Kashmiri

Cast:

Sajal Ali, Ahad Reza mir, Shaz Khan, Hira Salman

I have been waiting for a while for this serial. The main reason being that I have read the novel ‘woh yakeen ka naya safar’ several years ago and fell in love with the romance between Dr asfand and Dr zubia. I recently read it again only because it was getting difficult for me to wait for it to start. However it’s going to be difficult but I will try my best not to compare the serial with the novel because Farhat ishtiaq herself announced on her fan page that although the serial is based in the novel, the serial will be a lot more detailed.

The first episode showed three girls from three completely different backgrounds.

  1. Noori is an educated girl in a village called Rab Nawaz Village. She is a school teacher is considered very ambitious due to the Conservative environment in the village. She is abducted and like a lot of men in pakistan, her father blames her for this. He is embarrassed and does not want to go the police because he thinks that he will become the laughing stock for everyone for letting his daughter pursue her dreams.
  2. The second one is zubia (Sajal Ali) who lives in karachi. Her father (Ehteshamuddin) is a very conservative patriarch. Her mother (fazeela qazi) has recently passed away and zubia is devastated. Her father is unable to understand the gravity of the situation as he never valued his wife ever in her life and is only doing rituals sans any emotions. Zubia’s Khala, Mahjabeen (Huma nawab) tries consoling her and also tells her brother and bhabi to take extra care of zubia as she was very close to her deceased mother. Her father, on the other hand, although considers himself very religious but he lets no chance go by where he can other people’s feelings.
  3. Finally is the beautiful Gaiti (Hira Salman) who is getting married to Daniyal (Shaz Khan) after a six year long engagement period. Daniyal was in England during this time, studying to become a lawyer. Daniyal is Gaiti’s cousin and it seems her younger sister  is also engaged to Daniyal’s younger brother Asfand who is pursuing his mbbs currently. This track was the only relief during this high intensity episode.

Over all, I quite enjoyed the first episode. Every one looks good for their roles. Sajal Ali and Hira salman look beautiful. But as far as the performance goes, Sajal Ali was definitely the best. When the serial was announced and I found out the Sajal Ali will be playing the role of Dr zubia, I wasn’t completely convinced but her performance in the first episode was beyond awesome and I’m glad she was chosen for this role.

Did any of watch the first episode?

Muqabil (review) Episode 20

Edited by Warda Moeed Siddiqui

Intense dialogues, powerful performances and great chemistry from all the actors make Muqabil a treat to watch for all the viewers.
I am assuming the serial will be wrapped up in next 4-5 episodes and the makers are taking their sweet time to build up the climax.

The latest episode was slow and hardly had any development to the story but I think it was an important episode nonetheless. It was quite important to show how each character feels towards the current situation. The conversations between the Pareesa and Mehmood as well as the conversations between Arman and Mehmood were very intense and greatly depended on impeccable performances by three main characters. Of course I was hoping Arman would just blurt out the truth but he didn’t. Probably because the makers want to leave that till the very end.

First lets talk about the best thing not only about this episode but also this whole serial: Asif Reza Mir. Asif Reza mir is one of the best actors, Pakistani drama industry has churned out since its inception. His innocent face and the way the sweat beads start showing on his forehead every time he is confronted, shows his calibre and how deeply he gets involved in the character. I loved the scene where Shah sb was telling him about hell… his emotional eye expressions were far more better than other actor’s dialogue delivery.
Now coming to the worst parts of the episode:

The language Arman used for Pareesa! I know Arman is angry with Pareesa because he feels betrayed. He thinks Pareesa has merely used him to avenge what his father did to her. But it baffled me the way he expressed all that. I hope he will be able to control his emotions and make better decisions.The way Shehnaz made Pareesa leave. Which mother would do that?

Although I loved last night’s episode, I’m hoping there will be some progress in the storyline of next episode. I think it’s really important for Arman and Pareesa to find a solution for this… And of course hoping that solution will keep them together.
Team arman-Pareesa 😉

What it’s like to be a Foodie!

Written by Fatima Fizza

Edited by Pragya Shrivastava

The importance of cooking was made clear to me in that one month which I had spent in a single room of an Army mess. I had never really considered cooking as an important act in my life. My mother cooked and when she was tired or needed help our trusted manservant of long would pitch in and his food, although not exceptionally good was passably bearable. On weekends, holidays and trips abroad we ate out, Mediterranean, seafood from around the world and pizza were the staple favorites of the family (it wasn’t easy to agree on a single restaurant since we were a large family).

Even while travelling we mostly stayed in furnished apartments to allow for the occasional ‘roti and salan’ craving to be easily fulfilled. My mother, may God keep that excellent woman in great health always made it seem so easy. Then I got married and moved in with my in-laws. My mother in law was a keen cook too and despite being a working lady her kitchen ran smoothly and staple homemade food kept my stomach satisfied.

Although there was a difference in taste and variety, my inner cook still lay sleeping and setting foot inside the kitchen was not something I did much often except for the occasional baking. Cakes and Pizza I can bake since I was in grade school and except for a few special dinners and an occasional soup I was not tempted to be in the kitchen.

Then there came that one month when I was stuck in a single room and even though the mess waiters lined up daily to receive orders for any menu on this side of the Kabul River, whatever they presented each evening tasted oddly alike and of nothing I could put my finger on. So, it was this oxygen food (tasteless and odorless) that made me start wishing for a place of my own which must include a kitchen. The moment my husband and I shifted into our first new house, I focused on setting up the kitchen first (which is one place in the house where a woman who cooks spends a good part of her life).

IMG_2369With the expert help of my mother I did go about this task and started this wonderful journey of self-discovery which is cooking. Cooking is the other side of the coin which spells Foodie!


I am the average woman, trying to run a house, bring up well behaved children and balance relationships all the while trying to make something of my life. Unlucky to have been born with absolutely no idea what I wanted to do with my life, I have been lucky to have life throw me a pretty amazing mix of everything and I have been learning on the job. I am an avid lover of nature, i love to read and write and occasionally paint. I’m blogging to share my personal experiences in case they prove to be of help to other thirty somethings and if not then be a source of amusement and humour. So do forgive me for my excesses in advance and comment to share your own take on my musings.