Saturday, July 08, 2006

While Waiting...

So, it's been a long time since I put a real post here. A few things happened during this time, and I tried to post more than once but every time I kept postponing till the topic became out of date. I came across an interesting article in a local newspaper some weeks ago and decided to talk about it on the blog. It was about ice cream in Iraq and how Iraq was among the first founders of ice cream. Well, my laziness got me in losing that newspaper! Mom found that we had too many newspapers and magazines which we kept during the past three years that now we have no place for the new magazines and papers, so she decided to get rid of them and put them all (well not all, we kept some of them as they had articles and poems written by Dad) in a big plastic bag. I saw the bag in the garage for three days and kept telling myself that "tomorrow I'll search for that article among those newspapers in that bag". But because of myself that never quits the habit of postponing doing things I lost the article when I came out to the garage one "late" day and wanted to start my search among the trash. The trash car came few days before that day and took it away.

Well. I read the article only one time and there were many details about places and names where the ice cream was first made. So I can't write it now, and don't know which newspaper was that in order to search it online. Bottom line is: never postpone the work of today until tomorrow!

Dah! As if I will really listen!

I am supposed to leave to the U.S. at the end of this month, BUT I haven't got my placement nor visa yet! I'm the only Fulbrighter left without a placement and still waiting till now. This just makes me so frustrated and worried. There were times when I wished if I didn't apply to the scholarship cuz I felt that I was wasting time just waiting without having fun or even doing something useful to myself. It's been a year and one week since I officially graduated, and this whole year has past without me doing anything at all but staying at home filling applications and sending them online, attending interviews and luncheons and having lame exams for the sake of an M.A. degree.

One of the reasons I haven't posted for so long is that I noticed that in almost every post I complained about something that was bothering me, and this is not something that people want to read on blogs that should be interesting. Add to it my concerns about my future which I feel is at stake! I was told that being a grantee doesn't assure me that I will really get to the States and start with my study there! There were still the obstacles of a University placement and Visa! Well, I was shocked when I heard this, and the person in charge confirmed it to me. At that point, my mind started thinking and jumping to some conclusions that being late in receiving any news from any university means that it's all gone! Or about to. I felt that I was hanged somewhere between earth and the sky, and that was horrible. The "what if" was killing me and I tried hard to avoid thinking negatively but I just couldn't. I started to study the available options in case there would be no placement for me but everything seemed so limited. It's not what I planned to do.

I hated answering phone calls of meeting people cuz every time I talk with a person he/she would ask "when are you leaving?", "what the hell are you doing here till now? Don't you want to escape here!" and I didn't have answers for these questions, I was just smiling all the time and say "soon". It was obvious that I myself wasn�t sure of that!
I promised before that I would announce about my whereabouts in the U.S. once I get there. But unfortunately, things have changed and I cannot do that anymore. It's true that I still don't know my destination there, but once it comes I will not be able to post it on the blog. That�s for my safety. It is why I said on the CBox several weeks ago that I had important news that I can't post and that I would send them on emails...

And during my endless waiting I'm playing this..

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Reading this... I reached chapter 99 and will finish the book tomorrow...(teasing Attawie! :P)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I shoot a movie with my cousins at my grandparents' home last week. It started as a horror movie but somehow ended like a comedy. The story was about students living in one place where one of them is a killer. He kills the first victim and decides to kill the others in order to escape any interrogations, and then he persuades one of the students to be his partner and help him kill the others. Of course, the movie ends the same old classic way by defeating the evil. The killer was my uncle. I was the camerawoman but I also had a small scene where everyone laughed at my funny gestures! The director of the movie was one of my cousins and the soundtrack was an Iraqi song. The movie titled "Fear".

Keep your fingers crossed for Morbido!

P.S. Post published from Photobucket, hope it work out.


Lisa, New York said...

Oh, Morbido, I'm sorry you haven't got a placement yet. That must be so frustrating. It also makes no sense to me. I assumed, like you did, that when you became a Fulbrighter you were automatically guaranteed a University placement. That's the whole point of being granted a Fulbright scholarship, isn't it?!?

Well, I hope some university hurries and offers you a place! I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for you.

Bill said...

To fail is not a negative, it’s a positive, and we fail forward.

ill cross my fingers for you..but..i don't believe in voodoo :)

Keep the hopes up, stay focused on the goal.

David said...

This must be terribly frustrating for you Morbido! I really hope that you will get a placement and soon! Let me ask you something. Are you applying to specific schools in the U.S., or would you be willing to accept a placement from any University here?

I think that I will do a bit of research on the Fulbright program. Perhaps I may learn something that could be useful to you.

programmer craig said...

Is it because you can't get the visa until you get a placement? Well, I'm sure they are saving the best for last, and getting you into one of the best schools, Morbido :)

There shouldn't be any problem with the visa, as the Fulbright program is run by the US Department of State! Department of State also is responsible for granting visas, after all!

About the Ice Cream... do you mean "Sherbert" by any chance? You got me curious about it and I did a google search. The word "sherbet" is apparrently turkish and the same word as persian sharbat, both of which come from Arabic sarba (sorry the special characters didn't copy paste)which was a fruit drink often cooled with snow. Anyway, even if you didn't mean sherbet, I learned something new reading your blog today :)

Mad Canuck said...

I'm surprised this would take so long - it's July now, and you don't even know what city you're going to. This must be really frustrating for you.

It's also worrying, because most universities have processed their domestic and foreign applications and sent out their acceptances by now.

From my experience, coincidences are few and far between. If you have not heard anything regarding a placement, and especially if the other Fulbrighters have, there must be a reason.

If I were you, I'd start asking some probing questions, to try to see if there are any issues, if this process is waiting on anything, etc. Perhaps your application is gathering dust on some university bureaucrat's desk, or even lost. The trouble is, if someone makes an error like this, you are the one who suffers for it.

One way I've seen things get lost here is unique to foreigners: many US organizations use a person's social security number as a unique identifier for things like application forms, forgetting that non-Americans don't have social security numbers. When I first came to the US, my first employer lost an important form I'd filed with them because I'd left the social security number field blank (as I didn't have one yet).

Don't be afraid to push a bit. If you are polite and friendly, but persistent, people will not fault you for it.

Original_Jeff said...

Darn! I was really looking forward to that article on Iraqi ice cream. Just kidding. :-)
Hopefully soon you will be on your way to study in the U.S. and the long period of waiting will be just a bad memory (and a long forgotten entry in your blog!).

Lynnette in Minnesota said...

I'm sorry to hear things are taking so long, Morbido.

Mad Canuck's advice was good. Sometimes things get lost in red tape. Or simply lost. I've had the same problems with the state of Minnesota losing things I have faxed or sent them via mail. It doesn't hurt to ask a few questions.

Good luck. I'll bee keeping my fingers crossed for you too!

Michomeme said...

hi sis

i hope you will get a placement so soooooon, just be patient...
i will keep my fingers crossed for you too

luv ya


mike said...

It's up to you to take action immediately. There are hundreds of universities in the US. Get on line and start sending emails to the admissions office, today.

I suggest you think about places you would really like to go. For example, do you like the mountains and deserts of the southwest US? I am a university professor at a small university in the southwest. Email me: mcnaught at


Morbid Smile said...

Hi everyone!

Lisa, I'm, too, surprised to know that there is a possibility that a Fulbrighter might not be able to get a placement at a university. It just didn't happen before. And like you said, being granted a scholarship means that I would automatically get a university placement! I just don't know what's going on, the process has become so slow lately ..

Bill, well I don't believe in voodoo as well, but that's what we are used to say about those good luck charms, or don't know what! Thank you.

David, that's REALLY frustrating for me, and for my family as well. Answering your question: I'm not applying to a specific university in the States, and the reason for that is because the Fulbright chooses the university for the grantees. We can give up to three options of universities we like to study at, but the options are not necessarily granted. Iraqi grantess have some limitations, the program is still new in Iraq as this is it's third year.

Craig and Jiff, good news for you... After a desperate search on the internet, I found that lost article about the Iraqi ice cream! And it's going to be the next post, so stay tuned! ;) Part of the article is about "Sherbet" and how the Sumerians used to serve it.

Yes, Craig, I can't get the visa unless I get the placement first. The process will be like this: Getting a placement, then getting some emails about terms of appointment and schedules about the pre-academic course and its place, after that will be terms of appointment about the academic course along with domestic arangments and other stuff, and it's only after that I will be asked for a visa interview.. then if all goes well I will get it and set a date to leave for the States. The Fulbright will probably set dates for all of this. Still so much work ahead!

Mad Canuck,

I knew lately that Fulbrighters who are still without placements or will be late for their academic study will be signed up for winter courses instead of Fall. We were given a date to leave on late July or early August as one group consisting on 41 grantees, but now this have changed as some had already left, and others like me are still waiting. I still hope to get their by winter.

And I don't think that my application could be lost or anything like that as everything is going by email till now, and if it happened that they did lost my application they could easily ask for another copy. I've already sent many copies every time they asked for one. There was no social security number field in the application form as it was made for Iraq. When you first want to apply to a Fulbright scholarship you will be asked about your home country, then you will be given an application form that appropriate for everything in your country..

Jeff, thanks! I do hope that too, and I'm still patient till now luckily :)

Hi Lynnette, I think the people working in the Fulbright office will start hating me for my emails and questions to them! Untill yesterday, I was given a new email address and sent an email to ask about what was going on with my placement. I hope to get some replies soon.

Hey sis! Thanks. I know you're praying for me :) I will be patient. Luv ya too.

Hi Mike, and welcome here :) I wish I can do exactly what you said and start sending to addmission offices in universities right now, but unfortunately this is not the case with the Fulbright! We were asked never to send any emails to any university as the scholarship office is doing this on our behalves. For me, any place will be so fine. I have friends almost in all parts of the State and I know that it will be a great experience no matter where I will be.

I'll keep you all updated with the news. Thanks for all :)

ac blue eagle said...

If you were here, you could contact your Congressman (or Woman)! Sorry for the snafu! If you need someone to contact Ohio State or Ohio University, let me know!
Good luck, anyway!

David said...

Morbido, do you remember when I told you that I met an Iraqi student named Samir at my University? I also had a friend from Jordan, another from U.A.E., and one from Iran. There were many students at my University from all over the Middle East.

My University has a very large department for international students. They even have a department for Fulbright programs. If you like, I could try and put you in touch with someone at that department. It is not an admission office. I don't think it would break the rules if you just got some information. You might learn something in general about the Fulbright program that could help you to move things along. If this sounds interesting, just send me an email so that I will have your email address.

programmer craig said...

Well, Morbido, the way you describe it, I think the delay in getting a placement might be a good thing, though it probably doesn't seem like it :)

They may be waiting for an opening at one of your first-pick schools. Fall is usually the heaviest enrollment period for US universities. That's what I'm hoping for anyway :D

Looking forward to your Ice Cream post.

Iraqi Testimonies said...

Do you feel Joy for her?

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog via the kid's. So, you're an English major and going to the US for a master's, damn! Well, it looks like you have quite an interesting blog here, I'll have to be checking on back once I return from Ecuador<--- I'm leaving for there tomorrow, a month without Internet. :-(

PY said...

Hi MSmile. I just sent you an ebook to help make your waiting a little bit nicer. It's format is LIT, so you need the Microsoft Reader (free at Microsoft's site). Hope you like.


Hajar said...

I hope you get your placement, God Willing!
God Bless you in whatever you do!

Anonymous said...

Hi sweet girl!!
A kiss from Italy and if you like I live here the link to my blog...


Anonymous said...

why you want to go to U.S. while U.S. troops are killing your people?

jarvenpa said...

I hope that suddenly you have had good news of placement in a great place, and that all is now going smoothly for you. It is fun to think you may be in my country, even though you won't be able to say where.
As for ice cream--sure, it makes sense it would be invented in your country, where the summers are apparently very hot--and people seem to love delicious things. When I was little I heard that maybe it was in Rome that it began--when rich spoiled people sent their servants far away for snow and ice and then put sweet syrup on the snow. But sure--lovely Middle East ice cream makes sense.