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Short Take: A whole new world
January 13, 2018
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A whole new world

Social media may pull people apart but it just as easily pulls people together. This is a topic that not a lot of people talk about but we see every day like when you talk to your old grandparents on the phone.

It allows people of same interests to meet like reddits, my favourite being reddits on animes that I watch. There are over 638,959 sub-reddits and this number is increasing.

People might argue, “Media is a distraction from everyday life and pulls more families apart than it creates.”

To that I would say media is not inherently bad and like everything else in this world it is what you make it.

Trying to stop using the Internet is impossible because we are becoming increasingly more connected and we are becoming unable to live without it (in developed countries, the average person spends 5.2 hours online).

From Quantum Physics to cute cats, the Internet has it all.

There is even a bored button website and yes I did just spend 30 minutes finding that.

I came across an endless amount of information along the way.

It was truly a whole new world.
Hussain Munawar

Water village

The water beneath the boat was like clear glass until we hopped on, breaking it. My family and I were all as silent as mice when the boat began, the beginning of the journey being slow and steady.

After going around the lake once, the boat took us towards The Water Village, a whole town above the water.

My father asked the boat driver about the place and he went on telling us it started four hundred years ago and how Brunei started off, the people all being fishermen at their start.

We saw houses just as good as they would be on the ground above the water, some still even accompanied by families.

As the ride went on we saw a whole school above the water and a small, thin wooden bridge without any railing leading towards it. The boat driver told us that children living in The Water Village had to walk every day over the bridge to get to their school.

We then saw an old, broken down house, where the driver began telling us of the fire that took place. After seeing it, I was surprised that people still lived on top of the water when they also had the option of going on the land. Apparently, after the event people did start to go on the land, but some still stayed back with their roots over the water.

As we went deeper into the village, the more life we saw, people with their kids talking and playing in front of their houses. We also saw a police station and a fire station in the large, unending village, showing us things we have never seen.

It is surprising to see how this beautiful place began from water four centuries ago and how it all shaped up to be what it is now. The experience my family and I had there was not like any other and the memories we created will always be with us.
Noura Alsuwaidi

Patient waiting

The waiting room at the clinic overflowing at the seams was evidence of a long wait. I had anticipated it, which was why I had brought along, in my bag, my trusted companion to keep me company.

Yes, my ally through the patient waiting was my book. What better companion can I hope for through the endless hour or so than my book? It had the unique quality of endurance that is hard to find in anyone else, kindred spirit though they may be, for offering to accompany me to a doctor’s clinic.

And because my book would transport me to quite another world in a matter of seconds, I too would not feel the impatience of the long wait. I must have buried my nose in my book for about five or ten minutes only when I became aware of several sets of eyes on me.

I glanced around casually, then resumed my reading, brushing aside the sensation of being watched.

But the weird feeling continued so I took a break from my reading to look around and observe the different shades of humanity gathered there in that room.

At first I didn’t notice it but a second later it struck me. I was the only one in the room with a book! And what did the others have? A phone.

So I was the odd one out, but did I care? I went back to my pursuit of the pages.

Soon the seat next to mine emptied and a young lady with her cute little girl came and sat there. The little one was impatient to have something from her mother’s bag. Imagine my joy when what the young mother pulled out of her bag was an ABC book!

I smiled, thankful that my kind wasn’t extinct yet.
Vidya Shankar

Selfless service

“A married woman whose main occupation is caring for her family, managing household affairs, and doing housework.”

This is what I learnt from the dictionary when I searched for the definition of “housewife.”

A friend asked me, “Why a woman is called ‘housewife’ and gets less respect compared to all the hard work she does all day, throughout the year?”

I am also puzzled.

I have also heard of people introducing their wives as “housewife,” instead of “homemaker.”

“Did you notice the amount of work I do every day? It’s a thankless job!” my wife too often complains. “I don’t get paid for what I do every day, throughout the year with no break, public holidays, weekends, annual leave,” she opens her heart with a smile.

Perhaps more than a scientist’s thinking or an engineer’s vision, a woman’s mind envisages life differently and performs the duty of a manager, an employee and everything comes under them.

The concept of a family brings bright thoughts when everyone shares the joys and challenges.

People may realise its value when their home becomes a bachelor apartment.
Ramachandran Nair, Oman

A dad’s tale

My monotonous early morning routine had taken a new twist. My wife had travelled to visit her parents.

My job as a graphic designer gave me the liberty to work from home whenever required, so I had opted to take care of our six-year-old daughter Sara. While busy at work, I simultaneously kept giving instructions to my little princess who constantly craved for my attention.

Little did I know how tedious it was to single-handedly parent a young child!

Only three days had passed and she commented how bored she was of taking bread and jam to school. I was responsible for her school meal, as my wife had cooked lunch and dinner. I could only get as creative as liberally lathering butter and jam over two slices of bread.

Combing her hair every morning was no joke either. Her long thick tresses were quite a task. I imagined this episode as a sweet father-daughter bonding session. I had looked up a few tutorials and thought I was ready. Least did I expect for these sessions to transform into such a challenge, with her yelling that I had yanked too hard on her hair.

Added to this were a zillion questions for which I had no answers, and sandwiched between every ten of them was “when will mom come home?”

Every time my wife called, I would lie telling her things were absolutely perfect. I had my ego to pamper.

The toughest was yet to come; while waiting at the bus stop, she would want to hear the most imaginative of stories. When the mind is sleeping, to make simple communication is a magnanimous struggle, let alone think up fairy tales.

My heart reeled for single parents and a wave of happiness and gratitude washed over me on the thought of having a wonderful life partner who shared my responsibilities gracefully. I felt guilty for never truly acknowledging her efforts.

My show of appreciation was camouflaged with streaks of vain pride which I often experienced being the sole breadwinner.

The two weeks came to an end, at the end of which I had an incomplete logo, an unmade house and a daughter ready with a tirade of complaints.

So when the wife called asking if she could extend her trip, I give her my brutally honest response and ensured that she hopped onto the plane in time.
Maaz Hurzuk

Don’t count

In physical exercises, it is said, “Don’t count reps, make the reps count.” Many people in a gym count their workout reps and they get out of form and tired very quickly.

I always set a minimum number of reps I need to do with good form for required weights. Your body doesn’t know how to count, so do not stop until your body tells you to. Do not limit yourself by counting reps.

Legendary boxer Muhammad Ali said, “I don’t count my sit-ups; I only start counting when it starts hurting because they’re the only ones that count.”

I don’t actually mean stop counting reps forever! Do your regular routine, with your regular poundage, but don’t keep your mind fixed on counting the reps.

Push yourself hard. Your goals will be accomplished.
Adnan Mehmood

Watch out

Back in my school days, my friends Amir and Bilal were sitting at the cafeteria. Amir told us that his uncle from the UK had gifted him a beautiful watch.

Amir invited Bilal home to see the watch.

“Why don’t you bring it to school?” Bilal asked.

“It’s because that watch is not only beautiful but also very expensive. My mother is against my carrying it to school.”

Somehow, the next day Amir convinced his mother and reached the school proudly displaying the watch.

Everyone praised the beauty of the gadget and Amir was overjoyed.

After school, it was cricket time.

Suddenly, Bilal noticed the watch missing in Amir’s wrist.

“Where is your watch?”

Amir was shocked. A massive search by friends yielded no fruit.

When Bilal reached home and saw his bag he was thrilled to see Amir’s watch hanging on his bag zip.

Bilal’s father informed Amir’s dad, who in turn, broke the suspense to Amir after playing a little prank.

It was a happy ending, especially because Amir offered us friends a sumptuous treat.
Zakir Jawed

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