Saturday, December 31, 2005

Christmas in The Darkness!!

New Year's Eve is tomorrow, and it seems that everyone in Baghdad and other cities in Iraq will have to spend it in the darkness! There is no electricity at all. NEVER AT ALL !! Adding to it the lack of water and the freazing weather!

How cool can that be?! Very promising !

The whole family planned for a big xmas party this year to be held in my Grandparents house. My cousins planned to sleep over in our house after the party to have some fun. One of my cousins decided to wear Santa Claus custom and to make us some games, another cousin decided to play the D.J. and he started to get the Xmas songs. But none of this will happen!

My aunt's husband's Mother died yesterday. It's not respectful to make any party while he is mourning his mother, even my cousins won't be able to do anything cuz they are sad for their late Grandmother. So, no Xmas party this year.

I don't remember that much about the begining of this year, but its end seems dreadful to me now with all those bad events! I just want to bye-bye it as soon as possible.

This is a quick post, but I have to end it now cuz the electricity is untrustable at all !!!

Good Night everyone. Enjoy your Christmas :)

Friday, December 30, 2005

Sick \ Miracleously Alive !!

Hello everyone,

I hope that people are still visiting my blog cuz I haven't updated for sometime now! I've been sick lately and couldn't check the blog or even the emails. Flu time!!

It happened three days ago. On Monday exactly. The weather got very cold in Baghdad starting from Sunday morning when I was at college. I go to college once a week to see some of my friends and to have fun. I woke up on Monday morning at 10 o'clock feeling sick. Then after an hour I decided to call Mom on her work to ask her about some pills to take, but I was shocked to hear my Mother saying to me "Hanoona, a car exploded in front of me, I'm coming back home now. Don't tell anybody!!" .. WHAT??!

I forgot all about my sickness, and kept walking back and forth inside the house waiting for my Mother to get back home. I was alone at home and I didn't call anyone to tell them about the news cuz mom told me to freak anyone out cuz she's alright. The time between home and Mom's work take about 15 minutes, but it took her more than 45 minutes this time! There was a heavy traffic jam, and the road was closed cuz of the car-bomb.

I imagined everything. I was afraid to open the door when she nocked cuz I thought that I would see her wounded like what we see on T.V.!! But thank God, she was ok. She was shaking, her voice was shaking too, and all what she said that she saw the police car burning and a man lying dead down the street.

The car-bomb was only few meters from her, but she was inside the building which saved her from the fires. She was standing near the front windows of the shop (her working place). And she said that everything was calm and normal untill suddenly she heard and sensed something unusual, something like an earthquack maybe. The door and the windows all fell down out of a sudden, and dust and smoke raised up in the air. Mom said that she was shocked and couldn't believe what happened that she stayed in her place looking at the glass falling down! My aunt and other two or three women were with Mom in the same place. They all ran to the back and started to scream and shout out of fear, they called for Mom to go to them but she said that she was scared to look back at them cuz she thought that the ceiling was falling down! She asked them if they were ok, and they said "yes", so she went back to them and stayed at the back of the shop.

The street was all showing in front of them cuz there was no door and windows anymore. Just like a movie theatre! Mom saw a police car burning in the middle of the street along with another car. The police car was the target. She thought that the other car is the car-bomd which exploded, but it wasn't. There were people inside this other car whom they burned inside! The car-bomb was on the right side of the street, and there were some other cars beside it which were all burning. There is a I.N.G. station in the same street, all the guards hurried to the "crime scene" to rescue people and to pull the cars to avoid more explosions. They could get Mom, aunt and the other women and people inside the building. They took them out to another place in the same building but far away from the fires. There police car kept burning for long time, and the bomb-car was fully loaded, so it kept firing! Mom says that the sound was horrifying and it's never like when we hear it from afar!

The policemen died inside their car, a Janitor of a school which is located right in front of the fires died, a teacher inside the school also died, and some other people were injured. The screen windows of the shops were all damaged, the street itself is damaged and is never the same again!

Mom was just few meters away from the car, and only few inches away from the windows which could have hurt her so bad! But she got out of this miracleously with no single injury. I thank God every single moment that she is still alive.

And that was another day in Baghdad !!

Monday, December 26, 2005

Merry Christmas Everyone :)

We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
We wish you a merry Christmas
And a happy New Year.
Glad tidings we bring
To you and your kin;
Glad tidings for Christmas
And a happy New Year!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Meeting The Fulbrighters

Hello everyone,

First I would like to thank all of the people who helped me and gave me their opinions about the the Fulbright Writing Sample I made. I made some changes, added more details and applied all the other suggestions. Thank you all :)

I have been fighting with the blogshpere lately. My blog disappeared suddenly, and I had to get it all back in some time! It's ok now and I hope it won't happen again although my blog disappeared for three time so far.

The good thing that happened this week was that I met the Fulbrighters for the first time since we have been granted the scholarship. The meeting was yesterday, and it was quick but awesome. We faced many difficulties getting into the Green Zone cuz the meeting was at the Convention Center. We were surprised to know that we were not allwoed to get into the Convention Center, and we had to wait outside in the bad weather.

The meeting was supposed to be at 10:30 in the morning, but all of the Fulbrighters came way earlier than this time. In Iraq, when you have an important meeting, you have to get out of home on an early time cuz you don't know what to face down the streets at any moment. The streets might be blocked or maybe you can't get to your meeting on time. So we go out early to avoid such accidents.

The Fulbrighters were from different regions from Iraq, mainly Baghdad, Basrah, Mosul and Kurdistan. Some took a hard and long trip to Baghdad for this meeting. The big surprise was
that we had to meet our principal in the Center's garden instead of the hall !!! Now the garden is an open space for everyone and everything. Iraqi, American and Georgian soldiers were passing by all time listening to our meeting. There were some gunshots and far away bombings in the Zone.

The meeting was a big disappointment for some of us. We were kinda "rebuked" cuz some of us did mistakes in their applications or something like that! Anyway, the meeting was kinda good, although it was too risky to get into the Zone! Unfortunately, I didn't have the chance to talk to all of the Fulbrighters, the time was short and we started to go one by one. The most people I was looking forward to meet were Hala and Ardalan, and again, we hardly talked together!!! I kept searching for Hala but I found her just few minutes before I go! And Ardalan didn't tell me that it was him at first, he just told me that he reads my blog so I had to figure it out by myself. And maybe we talked for less than one minute!!

I don't know what really happened that made the meeting very short and quick. I'm sure that non of the Fulbrighters wanted it to be in this way, but the place was dangerous and we were all "standing" for long time in the garden. But all in all, it was great to see them.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Blog Retrieved !

Hello my friends,
I don't know what happened in the blogsphere last night cuz I woke up this morning and saw that my blog was gone!! Nothing was showing in the page except the black bar. So I had to change the template, but my Chatting-Box is gone!!!!

Anyways, the Fulbright asked me to send them a writing sample of any topic of my choice cuz they say that it will help my placement officer. So I wrote this and want to ask about your opinion before I send it. I'm not totally convinced in it so I'll wait for sometimes and ask about opinions before I send it to the Fulbright office!

Man and Society

No man can live or survive alone in the world. A human being needs to live in communities in order to survive and fulfill his needs and goals. The social life consists of different societies, and people who live in those societies give the shape and character of a certain society. In life, a person gets to meet many people different from him and from each others. They are different because every human being has his own character, way of thinking and point of view about every aspect in life, and those views differ from one person to another. Those people help each other and fulfill the spiritual, physical and emotional need of one another. That’s why no one can live alone.

The happiness of an individual lies in his existence among special people like family, friends and loved ones. So, a person’s own society starts with those people. Life is a journey in which we do different tasks and assignments, meet many people, know many things and get through many periods of easiness and difficulty. In most of the times, a person may die without accomplishing all his dreams and goals, and without seeing every phase of life.

Family, friends, faith and love are essential majors or pillars in life. We can get through many difficulties and make our dreams come true with the help of family and friends. We can make the world a better place when we spread the love in our hearts to the whole world starting with the closest people to us. And above all, faith in God can get a person through many hard times, and it gives a person a mighty strength and peace of mind that can help build a perfect community.

A person can be creative when he lives among people. Isolation and loneliness are destructive means which destroy the human beings’ lives and wills, and prevent them from enjoying life. Loneliness causes misery and depression to people because people can’t go on with their lives if they are lonely.

People need to live in large communities and interact with each other to live and accomplish their missions in life. That’s why no one can live alone.

Do you think that I should add more?? Help !!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Books Day!

Hello everyone,

Today I got my first book from This is my first time I order something online!! And since we don't have an access to credit cards in Iraq, I had to ask someone to order the book for me. This someone is an American works in Iraq, and he used the U.S. military mail to get the book for me. But I paid for everything, I only needed the credit card.

I wasn't intending to buy anything online before. Just two weeks ago, I was searching for some materials and articles on the internet about my M.A. major, and all what I did was I typed "Modern American Novel" in the search bar. The first thing I got was a title of a book that sums up the American literary achievment from Henry James to the present time!! So, in my case, this is a must-to-read book. The books title is The Modern American Novel by Malcolm Bradbury.

I received the book today. It costed me about 16 Dollars only. :)

Then later this day, my aunt's husband came for a quick visit with a small and unexpected gift for me! There were three books for me!!! The first book is the Holly Quran with English-language explanation. The second book is The Ideal Muslimah, The True Islamic Personality of The Muslim Woman. The third book is rather a booklet, A Brief Illustrated Guide to Understanding Islam.

Now I don't know how many books I have, but I don't mind having more!! It's good to smell them sometimes. I'm about to finish To Kill a Mockingbird, there are only three chapters left for me to read. I wonder if Boo Radley will ever show up!!

I thought the peaceful dream will last for a longer time now, but the bombings and explosions are back in town again!! Many explosions took place in Baghdad today. Dad sawa bombed car been dragged from "the crime scene" when he was on his way back home from work. He said it exploded on a police station. God knows what might happen tomorrow!

Till we meet again, much love and peace for everyone...

Thursday, December 15, 2005

This is my finger with ink! Posted by Picasa

In The Elections Day

Hello everyone,

So it happened. Many Iraqi people went to vote today, the process ended at 5 P.M. The day was somewhat peaceful. The news reported some explosions inside the Green Zone and other places in Baghdad and other cities in Iraq. All the Iraqi channels are broadcasting live from voting centers in all over Iraq. It's showing people well dressed up as if going to a festival and walking down the streets, all happy.

Last night, while I was still online at 2 A.M., the phone rang but I didn't want to answer at first. It kept ringing so I decided to see who was calling us in that time. The phone machine showed my Grandparents' phone number so I freaked out and regretted that I didn't answer the call from the begining. It was my Grandmother's voice on the phone, I asked her what was up and she told me that the mosques are calling people not to drink water from the water-pipes cuz it's poisoned in all over Baghdad!! I knew they wouldn't let the day pass peacefully!!

I ended the call and ran upstairs to Mom who was sleeping. I was bare-footed, and I felt that my feet wouldn't move as fast as it could. Lots of images came to my mind in that moment. Images of dead people poisoned cuz of the water, scenes like the ones we all saw of Halabcha Massacre, people falling on the ground. I was saying to myself that the Secret of Life has turned to a deadly beast in Baghdad. I called my Mother and told her the news, she ran down stairs with me to call my aunts and tell them the news. It was 2:30 when the news spreaded all over Baghdad. We kept receiving phone calls one after the other, and the mosques kept calling and warning people not drink from the water pipes.

I went to bed after 3 o'clock but I couldn't sleep. I kept thinking of what might happen in the next day and how many people would die cuz of this. Then heavy gunshots started near home and it lasted for a long time, and American helicopters came after a while. The sky was up all night.

In the midest of that nightmare, I was very hungry!! I tried to remember when was the last time I drank water, but I couldn't remember.

I woke up at 7:30 this morning, and I saw an SMS from Blueman telling me about the news. And he also informed me that T.V. channels say it's a lie!! The water is not poisonous. My father went out to the supermarket to get us some water bottoles. All the bottoles were sold out! My grandmother said that their neighbor who is a shop keeper got out in the middle of the night and opened his shop cuz many people asked him to do this so that they buy bottoles of waters from him before they vanish from the markets in the next morning! And so it happened, all water bottoles vanished before 8 o'clock in the morning. Dad had to buy us Pepsi and Miranda instead of water!!

The Minister of Health announced that water is all fine and it has no poisons at all, and no cases were reported in Baghdad's hospitals. People started to use the water normally, but I couldn't drink water since yesterday. I grew scared of it now! I even faced difficulty when I brushed my teeth in the morning! I thought that water would eat up my face.

Some people say that it was a rumor to distract people from the elections, and some others say that members of a family in a certain area in Baghdad were poisoned cuz of something they ate or drank, and they thought that it was cuz of the water. So the mosques started to warn the residents of that region and the news got all over Baghdad. It all happened in less that one hour!!

My family and I went out at 11 o'clock in the morning to vote. All my neighbors were heading to the same place. My region is somewhat small, so there is only one voting center in it. I could see almost everyone there, I saw some of my old teachers in primary and secondary schools. Some of them were very old and could hardly walk. I also saw some girls whom I rememberd their faces as they were with me at school as well. I didn't know them personally but I could remember them. I saw two elderly couples walking out of the center, they were helping each other to walk among the masses. They were very old that they both had walking sticks to help them walking steadily. I looked at them and I was amazed to see such old people coming to vote, it must have been hard on them to get out of home and walk for long distance to cast their votes, but they did it.

After that, we went to my Grandparents house and has lunch there. The channels were all talking and showing scenes about the elections in Iraq. I came back home, took a photo for my finger with the ink.

Now the process is over, and there is another stage we have to go through, which is to wait and see who is going to win.

Much peace for all

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Counting Down

Hello all,

Everyone is counting down towards the elections' day. I'll go to vote, and I hope that all of the Iraqis will do just the same. People started to stay at home preparing for the elections since today. My Mother didn't go to her job, and my Father came back early saying that the roads are almost empty. I think that if I could go out today I would see nothing down the streets but the so many posters of the lists and the elections!

Something new happened in my neighborhood today. There were some men who were distributing plastic bags contain posters and some other stuff of the elections. And the way they distributed those plastic bags was kinda fun; they threw them into the houses over the fences! They didn't even knock on doors. My aunt who happens to live in my area called us to say not to freak out if we see a bag flying in our garage! Anyone might suspect it to be a bomb! So, Iwaited, but I got no bag!! My aunt got one with a poster of Iyad Allawi's list.

I went to college on Saturday to meet some of my friends and to have fun. Everyone was talking about the elections and whom to vote for. Posters were everywhere of course, except inside the campus. A big explosion took place in a neighboring area near the university as I was walking into the building. The university's entrance was full of students going into the campus as it was 8 o'clock in the morning and all of them had lectures to attend. And when we heard the explosion everyone went saying "Oh my God, Allah Akbar".. I hear bombings very often since yesterday,and it's growing bigger this week. I think the reason is the approaching day of the elections. People want to go to vote for their future, and the terrorists are trying to stop them!

Talking about the explosions, I was chatting with my friend Blueman last night when he suddenly told me that a strong fire took place near his house. I didn't know what was going on, and I got the news from him this afternoon saying that fires and bombings were up all night in his region. He lives in an area in Baghdad which became one of the most dangerous areas lately. He said that it was exactly like war! And earlier this night, he told me that they have no water in the water pipes!! Sometimes when fightings happen in some areas, those places get disconnected from electricity and water for a day or two!! It happened alot in Aadhamyia where one of my aunts lives. Whenever a strong explosion and gunshots take place, the whole area gets cut off from electricity, and sometimes water too.

Now there are no schools and no universities, and there is a night cerfew from 10 o'clock till 6 o'clock in the morning starting from Tuesday night and until Saturday. I hope and pray that the election's day will pass very peacefully and that people will go to vote. I hope the best will happen to all of us.

Do you want to know for whom I'm going to vote??

I have a bad habbit of teasing people!!! ;) But hey you are my friends.

See the photos of the so many posters down the streets...

Well, it seems that somebody didn't like this poster, or let's say the man in the poster, and so he decided to do what he did! ..... "Democracy"

I'm voting for 731

I'm posting other pictures about the elections in my other blog, I hope that I will be able to publish it before the electricity goes off.

Good Night...

Saturday, December 10, 2005

A Friday in Baghdad

Today is a Friday. I can say that I had an unordinary Friday this week. There was a lunch festival as usual, but it was outdoors this week. I woke up pretty early this morning at 8 o'clock. I had a deal with my uncle that he comes and pick me up in the morning to go get breakfast from another neighborhood by car. The breakfast was the fameous Iraqi "gemar & kahi".

So I was asleep and the mobile was on the table next to my bed. The mobile rang with haithem Yousif's song "a7bab al roo7" [The Soul's Beloveds]. It was a missed call, and I knew from the song that it was my uncle. He said that he would make me some missed calls to wake me up so that I get ready to go with him. So, I called him back and told him to come over and take me. When he came, I saw my grandparents with him in the car. A tribe going for breakfast !! We took the high way as usual, and I was amazed to see so many soldiers and I.N.G.'s down the streets and on the high way. Check points were almost everywhere. My uncle waved to one of them as we were driving in the car, and they waved back to us. The weather wasn't cold at all, and it seems that they'd been there for sometime, probably since 6 o'clock in the morning.

We arrieved at a shop in an area called "Raghiba Khatoon" to buy what we came for. It was early in the morning as I said, but the place was full of people. Some people were having their breakfast there, and some were just buying food. Some came by cars, like what we did, and some others came on feet. I was feeling kinda sleepy and I said to myself sometimes what brought me here!

Anyways. Then I came back home, had a delicious breakfast with my family, watched T.V. for some time, then we got ready for lunch outside.We had lunch at a resturant on the Tigris River side (See photo above). The weather was very nice as if it was spring time. Yes it's considered spring in Baghdad in the current time!! I don't know how or why, and I said it many times, but it seems that Winter is still upset at Baghdad that it refuses to come this year. Well, I can consider it as a good thing that it's not winter here yet, but everybody needs winter. We need rain!

So, we came back around 3 o'clock. Oh, I forgot to mention that we had fish for lunch. Having fish on the river side is cool and enjoyable. Although I don't like fish that much and sometimes try to escape it by ordering something else, I enjoyed it this time. After we came back, I logged in to the internet to check the blog and emails, then I read few parts of To kill a Mockingbird. I reached the part when there was a dog walking down Maycomb and everyone closed the doors thinking that the dog was a mad one. I reached here, I still don't know what's next.

Then I called some friends and agreed to go to college tomorrow for some fun. The electricity played hide and seek as usual !!.. I'm writing this and watching part two of Harry Potter now. They played this part on some channel like three weeks ago but I missed a great deal of it cuz there was no electricity. Tonight, I watched the parts I missed, and now I'm writing this hoping that I would be able to publish it before the electricity goes off again.

I was just of bombings! And now I hear some!!! I don't know how did that come to my mind, I was trying to count how many time I heard explosions today. Two or three times in the morning when I was at home, a big one when we were at the resturant, and now some. And I hear some helicopters flying in the sky now. How cool !!

That was my day. Wait for more tomorrow if you

are interested to read ;)

Good Night...

Thursday, December 08, 2005

A Day in Baghdad..

The electricity is killing me!! I'm sorry that I'm not posting frequently.. So I started with Diary project, here's what I wrote as a first test.

Tell me your opinion :)

Tuesday, December, 6th 2005

It’s morning now, I’m heading to my university n the car. The high way is kinda empty now because it’s still very early in the morning. It’s 7:30 A.M. I always go to college early in order to avoid the heavy traffic jams down Baghdad’s streets. Besides, much of the explosions take place during the rush hours. There are two exits in my neighborhood, but the high way is considered the safest one because the other exit which is called The Army Canal is a very dangerous one because it is located among farms and can be a good hideaway for insurgents or even gangs, and also many bombings against the American envoys took place in this road.
I’m still in the car, I don’t take buses for transportation because I’m a girl and I’m afraid of taking a bus or hiring a taxi alone because of the kidnappings stories we hear in Baghdad. Also, because the bus takes a long time to get me to my destination. I can’t drive a car either because it’s not safe for a girl to drive by herself in such a terrible situation. We lack a great deal of safety in Iraq, and especially in Baghdad.
I always hire a private taxi that takes me to college every morning and brings me back home at afternoon. The driver takes me from my house’s door right to the university’s gate, and so on…
I see envoys of Iraqi National Guards everywhere this morning. It’s probably because the Parliamentary Election’s day is approaching, and maybe because of Saddam’s trial that took place yesterday.

Being graduated from university, I don’t have lectures or study anymore. But I still go to my college more than once a week. I go there for several reasons. One reason is that I got a Fulbright Scholarship to study for my Master degree in Modern America Novel in the United States of America, and I need to get my certificates and papers from my college to send them to the U.S.A. A second reason is to see some of my friends who still go there for fun and spend some time together. A third reason is that because there is almost nowhere else safe to go to for fun! There used to be a lot of amusement parks in Baghdad before the war where families can go and enjoy their times. But now those parks are either abandoned or located near or inside the Green Zone. Therefore; no one can go there anymore!!

We do have a lot of restaurants here, but we can only go there for lunch because it is dangerous to stay out of home after six or seven P.M. it’s a life risking going out at nigh I Baghdad. Besides, we have curfews here most of the nights starting from 10 or 11 P.M. until the next morning.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

It’s 10:30 A.M. now. I’m sitting at the college’s cafeteria with two of my friends students are everywhere in the cafeteria, we could barely find empty seats to sit on. The cafeteria’s building is not a very large one, there are other cafeterias in the campus which are way larger than this one, but I like this place the most because I spent so much time of my university life here with my friends studying, eating, talking and laughing. Sometimes, if we didn’t like to attend a certain lecture, we used to skip it and come to sit in this place and drink hot cappuccino in winter, and cold Pepsi in summer time. I wish if I can take a photo for the place and the students here, but unfortunately cameras are not allowed in my college campus anymore! The security guards at the campus’s gate didn’t allow me to take the camera with me inside the campus, and they told me that I can take it back from them when I go out. You may wonder now why cameras are not allowed inside the university, and why do we have security guards at the gates. It’s all for security and safety reasons.

A person can do anything with a camera. Anyone might take photos to students, professors or certain buildings inside the university and use those photos to locate a certain target to be hit, or a certain person to be killed! It’s not safe here at all. Everybody is scared of everything; we always suspect the worse to happen. If I want to take a picture of something, I have to take it secretly and as fast as possible in order not to raise suspicions about me. Even when I know that I’m not doing something bad or illegal, but we have to be careful and watch our steps and anything we do that can get us into troubles.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Now it’s 6 P.M. I came back home at 1 o’clock, I had my lunch and took a nap. We usually take naps after lunch. Mom and Dad came back home from their works, and they went for some shopping. They said that the roads seem calm regarding with some other days. Everything looks peaceful today. The good thing that happened is that we didn’t hear sounds of any near explosions. Everyone is waiting for the elections these days. It will take place on 15th of December, and there will be a break from schools and universities starting from next Sunday or Monday to prepare for the elections. No, the students won’t prepare anything by themselves, but some schools in each neighborhood will be taken as a voting center for people to go and vote at. I’m looking forward for that day to go and vote. Cameras are not allowed in such places either, so I won’t be able to take any photos there. Even mobiles are not allowed in the voting centers for security reasons.

I just heard my father talking about one of his friends whom was about to die in an explosion in Baghdad yesterday. My father’s friend, Abu Muhammad, was out with his wife to buy some groceries and stuff for home. His wife went into a shop to buy some things, so her husband waited for her inside their car. There was a police car in the same street near them, and there were cars and people shopping and doing other things. Suddenly, a group of insurgents or terrorists popped out from nowhere and threw a bomb on the police car! A huge state of fear and disorder happened there, people freaked out and ran away with their lives. My father’s friend ran to his wife who was inside the shop and they stayed there for sometime to protect themselves from the fire that occurred as a result of the bomb. The police car which was hit was very close to their car, so they couldn’t ride it and go back home like other people did. They had to wait inside the shop until another police car came and cleared the way. The damaged police car was pulled and the road was opened so they could go back home. But they couldn’t know if the policemen were killed or just injured as they couldn’t get any closer to ask the other policemen who came after the explosion.

The electricity went off! That’s a very common thing that happens in Iraq. We lack a great deal of electricity, clean water and other necessary supplies. Now I can not do anything when the lights are off, we do have a small electricity generator which we use in such cases... and almost every Iraqi family has a generator at home. The electricity has a schedule of being on and off, but this schedule is never stable! It’s currently two hours on and four hours off, and so on till the end of the day.

It’s 10:30 P.M. now, so I will go to sleep. I usually stay up till late hours at night when there is electricity, but my family decided not to turn on the generator in order to save some fuel because it’s expensive here. We have to tolerate living in the darkness at nights. And the good thing is that it’s winter time now, so we don’t have to worry about a hot weather and the air conditioners... I’ll sit in my bed listening to the radio till I fall asleep.

This is a typical day in Baghdad. There is no day here empty of bombings or stories of this kind! We always try not to go out as much as possible in order to avoid such accidents. We just don’t know when and where something like that can happen. Tank you for reading so far, and wait for more to come tomorrow.

Until we meet again with another day in Baghdad…

Monday, December 05, 2005

Starting With The Baghdad Diary Project..

Hi to everyone who is reading my blog,

So I will start with the Baghdad-Diary project very soon, probably next week. I got an email from the journalist telling me to send them a diary of one day as test, and to mail some packing papers of chewing gum, milk, food.. and such things. Luckily, I always collect packings papers and stuff! So I will send them soon inshallah.

The journalist also wanted me to see if I have a friend in Baghdad who can write about his\her daily life for the magazine in an interesting way, but the diary detailes should be different from mine. Well, the first friend who came to my mind is Attawie, but the Journalist replyed me saying that they want contributers from Baghdad only! I don't know who else to choose. I have my friends here in Baghdad but I know that they are not interesting in such things, they don't like to write about they daily lives in public.

I know, I have been very lazy lately with blogging! I don't like to be lazy, I always had ideas about what to write about. But I feel that I have nothing interesting to tell about these days. I'm having the same life every day. I'm still waiting for my Dubai visa, but it seems so hard to get it!!! I'm still praying and hoping for it though. I even see that not many people are visiting my blog lately! I have to post more and more in order to keep my blog alive.

I reached chapter four in "To Kill a Mockingbird". The novel seems so amazing from the very first page of it. It's full of details, and the events are connected in a very beautiful way.

Saddam's trial has been on T.V. since the morning. I watched some of it, but then I got fed out and left it. My parents are still watching it till now.

Untill we meet again...

Friday, December 02, 2005

Yesterday's Post

Well, I should have published this post yesterday, but I was disconnected from the internet for all morning and the afternoon time. And when I finally got the chance to get online and started writing the post, the electricity went off before I hit the "publish" bottom! That's so usual here!!

Anway, yesterday was the first of December. Before the war, this day was the Iraqi Martyr's day. I don't know if it's still the same now or th governement had removed it with some other memorial days. I remember one day at college, I was in the second stage, it was very cold in the morning and raining. The first lecture was this usualy subject we used to take at every grade in schools and universities that talks a little bit about the Iraqi history and so much about Saddam and Al Baath Party. Nobody in my department liked this subject, first cuz it wasn't of our field of study, and second cuz the professor who used to give that lecture was so boring! She had a Ph.D. in History, and she knew very well about the subject, but no one liked her! Even me.

So, in that day, we didn't take the lecture cuz there was an hour of silence in Baghdad, or maybe in the whole country, for the Iraqi Martyr's Day to remember the Iraqi soldiers who died in the so many wars we had.

The Martyr's Monument in Baghdad is one of the greates monuments in Iraq, now the government wants to remove it with other monuments cuz it's of Saddam's time! Well, I don't agree that it should be removed cuz it's our history and has to stay even if it remindes us of bad times. Check Photos From Iraq to see the monument's photos and other Iraqi monuments' photos.

Back to the first of December. It's not a real winter in Baghdad yet!! It seems that Winter is upset at the Baghdadis this year that it refuses to come! It rained few times here, and it was cold for a while, but it's not the real winter as it should be in this time of the year.

Again, the first of December, it was the AIDS Day. Or what it shoudl be called? Iraq is reported to have the least cases of AIDS among the other countries. That's a good thing.

On the first of December, I started reading a second book of that package I had from an American lady by mail. There are twenty six books ranging from fiction, non fiction, hitory, self improvement and other genres. The first book I read was "Personhood, The Art of Becoming Fully Human". I think the title can tell the book's contents. It was a very interesting book and worth to read. The second book is an American novel "To Kill a Mockingbird", it's a fameous novel which I have heard about so many time before, and I was so happy to see it among the other books I got. It's considered as a Modern American Novel written in 1960. That's my major for the Master degree :)

All the above was yesterday, and now we're back to the Present. What happened today? -Another lunch festival took place today, but it wasn't Dolma this time :), it was Kubba festival! Well, we can only gather for lunch at Fridays cuz everyone is either at work or university and we don't meet for lunch except for Fridays. So, on Fridays, Mom cooks for us anything that comes to our minds. Last Friday my mind talked and wanted Dolma. This Friday is Dad's turn, and he wanted Kubba. We were only three at lunch though, Micho was invited at her friend's for lunch.

Now I'm writing this and I see that time is passing. I'm listening to my MP3 songs which are all saved on my PC. The previous song was "Don't Speak" by No Doubt. The current song is Hotel California. The very previous ones were some of Chicago's old songs. This band remindes me of V.O.Y. F.M., the Iraqi radio station which used to broadcast songs and shows in English language before the war. Now the station is gone, I miss it! I used to listen to it all time although I never participated or called in any program in the station. It was fun and there was a specific time for each music genre. I liked the time between 10 P.M. and 2 A.M. Love songs like of Chicago, Westlife, Celine Dion, Michael Bolton and so many others.

Now I'm listening to Nothing's Gonna Change My Love For You. It's one of the so many songs that also remindes me of V.O.Y. F.M.

Good Night