*** Goodbye; My VIP Visitor!
Some years ago, I had visited this great Religious Scholar house and I was commenting to him that you have been staying with us for the last 20 days and that you will soon be leaving us till the next time! He hushed me not to speak so loudly lest you hear – and get angry and annoyed with this assertion – and decide to leave even earlier? I queried him as to how you could overhear as we were speaking alone at the time – and you were not with us then at that time – as we were having some sweets and Omani coffee at that time? He replied me – Trust me – he has ears all over the place – and he will certainly hear you!
When I was a young child and for the first time was told to receive you and show you around in that old place of ours in that distant land – and it was a day or two before you were going to leave us that poor granddad was crying uncontrollably and profusely that he may not be around next time you came – I wondered aloud the relationships between you two to go to this extent!
I must admit – with sincere and due apologies to you now – but at that time I was looking forward for you to go – so things could return to me ‘as normal as a kid usually wants’ – and not follow at that time I thought as hard and rigid rules. I wondered that though you were a guest in our house – even if invited – but you did not have to give us all these things to observe whilst you were and especially with us then!
I used to joke with you in my crude and dry sense of humour that in the local lingo you could only stay with us for 10 days only – as the cut off and limiting factor – but you just looked at me with great sad eyes – that even as a kid ‘I should have known better’ than say this absurd cutting remarks to you – after all you were our invited guest too. If you remember I joked about you if you knew farming and how to plough – because that is what was called for to force you to repay your overstay – and being the guest of the house. They even allowed brute force for you to repay the overstay – in case you refused to do so!
I remember when I told my granddad on this – I was laughing loudly – and with great mirth – but he was not laughing back – and looked sadly at as a lost cause and child – and just confirming his suspicions that it was wrong for him to force his daughter to marry my father – and in hindsight he should not have done that. With his big stick – he looked debating whether he should strike me with it – but just decided to be cutting more = add salt to the wound by saying – what else can one expect – the rule like father like son is very true! I was upset with my granddad that he thought you as more important than the rest of us – especially our poor targeted dad!
I have to admit to you this. I do not know how you are going to take it – knowing you can be sensitive a few times when you feel tired by all the remarks of others. And especially showing to be double faced and being hypocritical – that in front they show that you are most welcome – but hidden and away from you they look at the calendar – and hope that you will go away soon – and leave them alone to do the things they were used to do – with you not around to keep them in check – and forcing them to perform and try to ‘be better people’!
But I assure you – because I know them – and I am a ‘chip of the old block’ – as I am one of them too – we will all try to behave – and be nice and good – and hope it will be longer before you come and visit us again! Despite all the sermons and lectures – once it is night and eating contest time – we just behave as if you are not around. Like the East Africans say – if you want to insult someone that badly – why choose words or behaviour to do it – just do it – and all goes! I apologise and am very sorry for all these – but you are a great understanding person – even if it grieves and hurts you too!
And then another thing! I know you are not a great eater or drinker either – but even though you keep telling us that we are cooking too much food that goes to waste everyday – that even the cats (and dogs) are no longer interested in the left-overs – but despite your lectures, counsels and advices – they still do it.
I wonder if it is wickedly and purposefully done – so you get angry and annoyed – and leave early. But I guess they still want you to stay – and are showing it in their own ways – because they are looking forward for that special day gifts and presents – that you usually give out on the last few days! And of course all those money for the kids – after you have left the night before!
There is something that I must admit to you too before you go! If you have noticed – I was not that welcoming this year like in the past – because I am trying real hard to remain hospitable, receptive and welcoming! A few cases I had a mind just to tell you to please go – and I cannot keep up the pretences anymore – but my health has gone bad – and being diabetic too – had short fuses of anger and fury – and I think you must have noticed as I have dealt with others – even in the family.
I apologise sincerely for all these things – and I have a great mind that if my situation continues – perhaps you will not see me next time you come – but please do pray for me – and forgive me too. I have tried really hard this time – believe me!
My VIP Visitor – until the next time you come – adieu – and as I cannot say goodbye now – because you will still come to visit us – even if I may not be around the next time – but others will surely be there to receive you – welcome you – and all the grace and mercies you bring. For those that do not appreciate – and even behave worse than before – feel sorry for them – and pray for them only!
That is the only thing you can do for them – and please forgive them too! Including those that had a public lunch in demonstrations of your visit – because they did not want you to come and visit – and they were being advised to ‘make you feel welcome’!
I will try my level best to welcome you again – next time you do visit – but if you find my health and state has detiorated further to not able to welcome you – please forgive me from now! I had really tried – but dismally have failed – and let you down for the first time in my life now. My heart cries with remorse and sadness – but what else I can do? I only hope and pray that you will understand – and appreciate what I am saying to you now only! So sad…
So sad the more – because I do not know if you come the next time – if I will be around? And if – if I could welcome you and show you around? Because this time it was very difficult – and even on that day when my glucose count went down that low – because I was so sad and unhappy – and even The Paper and some Family members had attacked me – and I just could not take it!
I know that day you were disappointed – but what else could I do? That is why I am keeping away from The Paper – and those same Family members too! I hope you will not look at me ‘with lesser eyes’ – but I am so sad and unhappy – please Forgive Me Only!
Goodbye – My VIP Guest and Visitor – The Month of Ramadhan Fasting!
Majid Al Suleimany
*** Extracted from My Book – Between Us Only! The Sequel – Three – www.myownmajid.com