I’ve been studying all day, non stop. Well, actually I had a small reading break in-between. It’s been a long time since I wrote something, but nothing eventful has happened as of yet.
The day started nicely. My sister is still in my appartement so I had to be quiet when I was getting ready in the morning. I had coffee and read Qur’an. I find my day starts so beautifully if I read Qur’an in the morning, even if just a couple of pages. I feel more thankful and more connected and remember to say zikr more often. SubhaAllah…
After that I had lectures and then I went to the cafe I always go to, had another coffee, half a sandwich and worked from 1 until 6 in the afternoon. I had reserved a room in the library for 6 until 12 at night, and I’m there now. One of my friends has joined me. I had a really productive session in the cafe though. I finished my assignment and my reading for private law, so now I just have to prepare for work on Thursday. I have three days to prepare so I’m happy about that.
Last week was crazy busy. I had a lot of work to do and even though I finished everything on time, I had a bad fever for a couple of days which lasted for a week because I wasn’t taking care of myself and I forgot to eat. This week I meal prepped for my sister and I, that way I don’t go without food. Also I made my schedule better so I won’t die under the amount of work I have to do.
I read (well half-read) the book “Call me by your name” from Andre Aciman. I think. I don’t remember the author’s name. To be honest I didn’t know what to expect from the book, because I knew it was not really my thing. Like it’s a romantic book which I never read, but it’s also a book about two bisexual men – which is something that I am not and something I cannot relate to.
However, I’ve always believed that you can’t restrict yourself to only the type of knowledge you want to receive. So I bought the book and I kind of had to stop reading it because it was way too explicit for me. The theme of the book was not eroticism or something along the lines of it, but there were several pages that bordered on that. I don’t read these types of books at all no matter the protagonists. Mainly because I genuinely cannot relate to that type of desire for someone else (no matter the gender of attraction), because I’ve never had it. You can’t deeply crave or miss something you never had. This is my belief, it is not tangible to me therefore it is as if it does not exist for me.
Basically the book focuses on three characters:
1) Elio, which is the seventeen year old sort-of-confused-but-not-really boy. He is also the person that is telling the story and obviously from the manner in which it is told, it does not end with him being together with the man he loves. It’s more of a coming of age and understanding yourself type of story.
2) Oliver, who is the foreign American that comes to live in Elio’s house for the summer. Oliver is 24 years old, very intelligent and with obvious experience. Oliver is also cold and interesting and enticing to Elio who has never known anything like that.
3) Marzia, is an Italian girl who floats in and out of the story. This book is not about Elio and Marzia, it’s about Elio and Oliver however I feel Marzia is there to show the difference between the two attractions and how they can co-exist.
On one side, there’s Oliver who puts Elio in a strange, discomforted position of wanting something but also never wanting to cross the border of that something. As he says in the book, once the border is crossed – you can’t return to how it was before. On the other side, there’s Marzia and how calm she makes Elio feel. Marzia is the past and present, which seems static, known and welcome. Oliver, while welcomed comes with a lot of confusion and tribulation.
However, I can’t say I’m an expert on the book because I couldn’t finish all of it. It’s not really my thing and I had to skip pages because there were some super intense feelings, or some super intense scenes which again, not my thing.
Since I dropped the book I’ve been reading “All the Shah’s Men” from Stephen Kinzer. It’s about the fall of the only democratic leader (Mohammad Mosaddegh) at the hands of a very power-hungry UK and US. Well, UK was the instigator, however US (CIA) was the executor. On on the Irani side, you have an anti-Western prime minister. A lot of people associate radicalism with “anti-westernism”, however in this case it simply means an Irani leader that was not willing to stand still while foreign forces (UK) exploited Irani natural resources. A leader that wanted a democratic Iran, an Iran free of foreign powers – a safe and quiet Iran.
Mosaddegh objected strongly and without fear to the “claim” of UK on the oil in Iran. Therefore, UK saw as the only possible solution, a coup – convince Shah, convince US, overthrow Mosaddegh and replace him with a pro-western Prime Minister. A prime minister who would let them do as they wish in a foreign territory. President Truman was thoroughly against this and did not join UK, however Dwight Eisenhower had no problem with this action.
While the objective was clear: overthrow a democratic regime that does not suit us. The pretext was that Iran was going to become a communist state like North Korea. And so, operation AJAX started.
The involvement of US and UK in the politics of Iran, has had a lasting effect and led to the disquiet Iran that is today, and the great dislike of everything that is Western. With good reason to be honest. It’s a great book. I’m really enjoying reading it.
I saw this little poem so I’m just going to attach it:
Her dress is like a cloud, her face a flower.
The spring breeze reveals a peony after shower.
If she isn’t a goddess on Jade Mountain,
She’s a moon fairy from heaven I’m certain.”
-Faye Wong – 清平調 Qing Ping Diao
I just finished going over the material of one of my summaries and it took me quite a bit of time. All I have to do now is make PowerPoint slides of everything on the relevant topic and then I’ll be done with the subject.
I’m still in the library. I’m listening to 짙은 – Hero. It’s such a nice song. I actually love his entire album. I’ve been listening to a lot of music these past days, especially classical music since I’ve been studying a lot. Usually when I study I like to have background sound. I’ve been listening to Ludovico Einaudi (especially the album “una mattina”), to Roberto Caccapaglia “Quarto Tempo”, Shigeru Umebayashi “In the Mood for Love” etc.
From Roberto Caccapaglia, I really like Atlantico. It’s a musical piece I used to listen to a lot when I was a child, so it reminds me of home.
I missed the routine that I have when I’m here. I love being home, but that throws me out of my daily routine so I have to adapt to things over there during the month (or week) of break and then when I come back I have to re-do everything. It’s not that it’s tiring, but it changes my pace and I need to re-learn to get back in the grind of things.
I think I have this view and reliance on monotony on every aspect of my life, including love and relationships. To me, you’re simply a stranger, an acquaintance until somehow you become part of my routine. Somehow, I find myself talking to you more, meeting you more. You are there often at a constant. You become static in my life. When you become part of my daily routine, when you text me or call me at certain hours, I will inevitably start liking you.
This was the thing with Sam, too. I didn’t like him because he was extraordinary, intelligent or extremely kind. I did not like him because he had a certain thing about him. I liked and enjoyed him because he became part of what I was part of. It’s like that quote from Warsan Shire:
“My alone feels so good, I’ll only have you if you’re sweeter than my solitude.”
I like my solitude a lot. I like doing my own thing. I enjoy waking up early for Fajr, going to the library, having my morning coffee. I enjoy spending afternoons reading and listening to some music.
By the way, I think I’m going to buy Warsan Shire’s book “Teaching my mother how to give birth”. It’s a book of poetry and it was quite cheap, plus I still don’t have a book of poetry in my collection except old-school poets so I might as well start with this one. I haven’t been all too excited with Rupi Kaur, I don’t know why, but I want to buy this book from Warsan Shire and of course I’ll buy the book Skin & Sun from Key Ballah. The latter is so expensive, though.