March 30, 2009

NL (Part 2)

"Hala Nasser?"

"La la 5ala9 ... it's not my place to say"

"Yalla goolee..."

"Lae 5ala9 forget it ... Inzain, inshallah estanastai ilyom?"

"Off 7addi estanast!! I haven't had this much fun in years! I felt like a kid all over again! Thanks so much walla. Maga9art."

"Shda3wa, masawait shai! Ana ili estanast walla. Ya7lailha baby testanis bil aquarium," he said with a smile stretched from ear to ear.

And with that I got out of the car, smiling, walked toward the gate, and just before I reached it, turning around and waved goodbye to the man that had made me a child again, in a time when I thought it was impossible to be as happy as I was at that moment.

The next week, I was invited by Nasser to the movies at Soug Sharq. I parked my car in a random co-op near Nasser's house, where he came to pick me up. Nasser never hinted any flirtation, or anything equally inappropriate. As rehearsed at the Scientific Center, Nasser bought snacks such as chocolate and chips, offering some to me, and me refusing, within minutes I had all the snacks in my lap. I cannot remember the movie we watched, but what I do remember is Nasser glancing at me very subtly, as if not to disturb me, just to look at me, not to suggest anything, but, just to look, like an infant looks at his or her parents. I pretended not to notice, if I had we would have both been equally embarrassed.

We had gone to an early movie, and by the time we got out, we were ready for another adventure. We thought of this and that--restaurant, cafe--but nothing seemed too appealing. He invited me to his home but I kindly refused, saying that I really wouldn't feel comfortable in a man's home. He respected me saying, "ee la adry La6oof, sorry, ana ma kan qazdi shay walla, latfakreen '3ala6, bas kan qazdi ena neg3ad o nerta7, 7a6een 5aima bil 7adeeqa o b'3ait ena neg3ad, plz lata5theen fekra '3ala6 minni." Was he for real?! He was such a gentleman, o oslooba kan wayid 7elo! I started to blush and said, "La don't worry, ma5athait fekra," and flashed him a shy smile.

We drove around for what felt like an hour and you could tell Nasser was getting tired and frustrated with driving for so long. I said, "We can go to your 5aima Nasser, bas only for half an hour, you can serve me tea, meshtahya tea," with a smirk on my face. Within minutes we arrived at his house, it's not the most beautiful home, nor the ugliest, it was a typical Kuwaiti home, with a little garden, a large diwaniya for him and his friends, and a small little 5aima fit for three. He led me in quietly, so as not to alarm his mother, he had told her ena el shabab were coming so she wouldn't come out and check on them. The tent was warm and toasty on that especially cold night, and the only thing missing was the hot cocoa with mini marshmallows. In that little 5aima he had the customary cushions set up on the floor, a flat screen plasma, and a Play Station 3. It was refreshing to think of Nasser playing Play Station with his friends, it was so boyish, cute, and innocent, it was an image in my head that I liked very much.

"Shiftay hatha, madry shesma, thnaina yaboon madry shnu fa yetzawejon, chuck madry shnu..."

"I now pronounce you Chuck and Larry?"

"Ee hatha! Shaifita?"

"Lae.. 7elo?"

"Ee etha7ek, 3indiya... tabeen enchofa?"

"Laa Nasser mayamdi."

"Aah okay," he responded, with a look on his face that looked so hurt and sad that I couldn't not watch it.

"Maybe just a bit, but then I have to go home"

"Inshallah" he said, with a huge grin across his face.

We watched the movie, with Nasser sitting in front of the TV in the corner, and me off in the distance fidgeting like mad because of the awkward seated position I was in. I was trying to get comfortable and it just wouldn't happen. Nasser noticed my fidgeting and offered his spot to me, saying it was comfy. I accepted his offer, his spot was so comfy I snuggled up and watched the movie in peace. I felt so cold that somehow, I inched closer and closer to Nasser's body, seeking warmth wherever I could find it. I was curled up in such a little ball and somewhat shivering that Nasser got up, got me a blanket, and tucked me in it. I remember when my aunt used to tuck me in before I'd go to bed, I loved it, I felt so loved and cared for, something I hadn't felt in years. I looked up at Nasser and thanked him from the bottom of my heart. Even with the blanket, I felt cold, and I subconsciously moved closer and closer to Nasser. I was so close to his body that I could hear the sound of his breath, and that's the moment when I was finally warm. I had this warm fuzzy feeling inside of me, a feeling of total relaxation and ease. There was something strange about Nasser, the way he made me feel; I felt so safe when I was with him, like nothing in the world could harm me. Without thinking I lifted my head, turned to him, and put my head on his shoulder, asking, "3adi?" and he just nodded, without excitement, without frustration, just a nod, like a bobble-head toy would nod. I didn't care about the movie, or about anything around me, I had not a care in the world; I felt safe, and I wanted to hold on to that feeling for as long as I could. When the movie ended Nasser said,"Latifa, tara 5ala9 el filim, macheftee sa7?" with a little smile.

I blushed and said, "Sorry bas walla inta wayid comfy, chinnik mo5adda"

"Ee adry,"he said o 3afas waiha, "hal karsha mako akbar minha."

"Lol chub!! Bil 3ax .. 7adha comfortable, can I take it home with me?"

"Lol tekfain e5thee!"

"Hehe...Nasser, sa3a cham ?"

Nasser glanced at his phone and yelled, "Ullah! Tara La6oof esa3a 11:15!!!"

"Shit! Shit! Ohh shit sorry gelt shit!! Tara walla maseb chithi bas shit!!! Omi ebtethba7ni!! Yalla yalla goom wa9elni el bait!!"

We quickly got up, I gathered my things and we were in the car heading home. It's a good thing we live in adjacent areas, making it faster to get to each other or from each others homes. He pulled up in front of my house, I quickly said bye and ran inside.

"Mama, baba, I'm home!!"

..... no answer

"Moommmm!!! Babaaaaaaa!!"

"Madam dey go outt, maybii dey come baq apter" said Marcelle in a high pitched voice that could shatter eardrums.

I called Nasser and said, "Umbay te5ayal! 6al3een! We7na 6aireen o raktha 3al fathi!!"

"Laa? 7asafa 3ad, law chaifeen filim thani a7san."

"Hehe 3ad 7attan law 7a6ait filim mara7 ashoof, 7adi dai5a. Tara Nasser sorry 3an putting my head on your shoulder, madry shlon 9arat, 7asait eni kint 5adrana wagtha, sorry etha athaitek"

"Shda3wa La6oof 3adii. You can lean on me anyday"

I pulled the phone away from my ear and to my chest and hugged it as hard as I could.

I like him, I like him a lot

*** age6 badliyat sometimes fa etha I do, please let me know, I love to learn :)

March 28, 2009

NL (Part 1)

I'm sitting here, on my bed, in the shalaih, preparing to delete him out of my life. I have my facebook open, looking at his "Me" photo album. He's so cute in this one picture he has, he's wearing my royal blue shaba9a on his wrist, so cute. Snap out of it! It's better this way, it is. Just bring yourself to hit the "Remove from Friends" button, yalla ...

It started about two years ago. I was dating Hassan, he was a little bit of an asshole, but lets face it, most guys have the capability of being assholes at one point or another. Hassan was your typical liberal Kuwaiti, if he could even be called a Kuwaiti. Hassan barely spoke Arabic, was barely Muslim, and barely had any Kuwaiti traditions or values. Hassan valued girls, girls, and more girls. What attracted me to him? His stupidity. Just like a child is attracted to a bird with a broken wing, I was attracted to Hassan, I pitied him. Hassan was stupid, arrogant, egotistic, and utterly stupid. Just talking and thinking about him disgusts me, so I'm going to move on, he's had more than enough mentioning. Hassan had a friend, Nasser, who was so Kuwaiti, for God's sake, kan edawem jam3a eb dishdasha kilyom! He seemed so refined, so proud, yet modest. I didn't understand now Nasser could befriend someone as stupid and un-Kuwaiti as Hassan, but I was happy at the time, knowing Hassan would be a little more Kuwaiti with a good friend like Nasser.

One day while I was talking to Hassan, talking about this or that, probably something stupid like, "Hey, did you ever eat chocolates in the car? It's pretty cool actually, especially when you're high or drunk." Yeah, stupid. Anyway, somehow, I can't recall how, the phone ends up with Nasser, who's voice had a distinct sound to it, it wasn't wonderful, it wasn't annoying, it was different, it was his. It turned out that his sister is friends with my aunt! We spoke for what seemed like an hour on Hassan's phone. I knew Hassan would be angry, I didnt' care, I enjoyed every minute of it, it was nice talking about something not stupid for a change. A few weeks later I dumped Hassan, he was boring and stupid and I couldn't bear any more of it.

A few months later, I get a message from Nasser on Facebook, asking if he could add me, I accepted of course, he was a gentleman and a family friend of sorts and went to college with me. There was innocent messaging back and forth, complimenting me on my red Prada ballerinas that I wore to college that day, asking why I looked so worried, etc. I saw us as just acquaintances, seeing as he's asked about my friend before, saying "oooffff 7adddhhaaaaa sexxxyyyyyyyy!!!" I didn't mind it but when I think about it now, that was just a tad bit hailigi and distasteful on his part.

It was my birthday, which I assume Nasser found out about via Facebook. On my birthday I got a call from a random number, it went to voice message, I had missed the call. I called my voice message and it's that voice, that distinct voice that I enjoyed hearing. Nasser had been waiting outside my house with a present for me. I was surprised, shocked and nervous. I was getting dressed for my birthday dinner out with the girls and ran out to see him, I didn't want to keep him waiting, it would have been so rude! I couldn't have sent Marcelle out either, I had to go out myself, the man brought me a gift for Pete's sake! He looked at me and began to blush, I took that as him being shy, which I thought was the cutest thing everr. Nasser had brought me a cake, a large, massive cake. He wouldn't let me carry it in so he carried it for me, carried it into my home. He placed the cake on the first table he saw and said, "Ok yalla bye". He was so nervous he tripped over his own foot, it was the most adorable thing in the world. He couldn't get out of there any faster! I led him to the door and thanked him for his wonderful cake. I walked back and looked at myself in my reflection on the window. I gasped and covered my chest with both hands. The dress I was wearing, to my surprise, accentuated my breasts (translation: exposed my cleavage) and I had forgotten to put on a cardigan to cover my arms. I then realized why Nasser was blushing and was so shy, my breasts were in his face! The next few days Nasser texted me asking how school was, how I was doing, the formalities (let's hope the breasts had nothing to do with this act of friendliness). One day, while texting about life, he asked if we could meet up for coffee; I had to decline, I barely knew Nasser, and plus, it felt awkward, he was this conservative, closed-minded guy while I was this open-minded, liberal, free-spirited girl. We would never have a good time.

Months later, Nasser began calling me, always at reasonable hours of course, and never for long periods of time. I once mentioned that I had never gone to the Scientific Center, and that I'd been dying to go for years. He told me, "Yalla La6oof, badlai o ana bayi amorich al7een. Mali shi'3il tara, intai 9arlich fatra tabeen etro7een o ana bawadeech, yalla." I was so excited that I didn't care that I was going to allow some stranger to come pick me up and take me to the Scientific Center. I was still a child at heart. I put on a grey cashmere sweater, my favorite jeans, and a pair of grey suede high-heel booties. Nasser was very polite and didn't say anything inappropriate or suggesting flirtation, he treated me with respect. He asked if I wanted any snacks while we watched the imax and I said no, but he bought some anyway, which he offered, and I refused. Five minutes later, after countless rejections, I gave in and took the chips, chocolate, and candy, and stuffed them in my face. I had the time of my life, I felt careless, without worries, everything stood still and everything was about my happiness, and just that.
Nasser took me home, parked outside my house and turned to me and said, "Latifa, bakoon 9aree7 ma3ach ..."