Sunday, December 23, 2007

A Trip out of the Blue

It really came out of the blue. Mu (my chhoto fupu) and uncle (Dr. Shamsul Alam, my chhoto fupa) were supposed to go to uncle's village home at Mirzapur, Tangail with their whole family on Saturday, to stay at the new house they built there. Friday night all of the sudden my Dulabhai came up with the idea of going with them for just one day. I jumped for the idea immediately and my sister was also eager. So we made a phone call to my aunt, and the next morning, within just a few hour's notice, we were on the way. My aunt managed Shapanku's microbus for us. We were off early in the morning at 8:00.
We were scheduled to meet with two other cars of my uncle's party in front of the Smriti Sho
udho. But when we got there, they weren't there yet. Hence we thought, why not pay a visit to the National Monument? So we did. I've been to Smriti Shoudho before, but that was way back and I don't quite remember. That early in the morning there were very few people in there. I was pretty moved inside the complex when I found out that the whole place is actually a graveyard where many unknown martyrs of the liberation war were lying. I took some photos of the monument. Finally the other group was there and we started towards Tangail.
Just as we left the urban area, the rural landscape began to emerge. The striking green of the field on both sides of the road, the winding canals and the boats on them, the golden corn fields. The road got rough and bumpy soon. On several occasions we had to stop the car and drive slowly and carefully. At one spot in Tangail everyone got off the cars and walked as the cars had to cross an almost dried-out canal over some bamboo sticks, tied together to make a sort of bridge. The path was winding it's way through the villages. After about 3 hours from our departure we reached our destination.
My uncle and his brothers have been working on a house for over a year in their village. They had to go through tremendous hardship to supervise the construction, coming here again and again from Dhaka. When I saw what they've been working on, I felt all their hard work was worth. They've constructed a fully furnished building as a kind of a bungalow to stay for the family when they visit here. The house was as modern as you might want it to be. It was a duplex house, with the village huts surrounding it. The rooms were beautifully arranged and the toilettes were also impressive with standard fittings. Verandas were placed both in front and back of the house. The front veranda gave a beautiful view of the pools ahead, and the back gave a view of the surrounding village huts. It was a great place for picnic and to stay out for some days to enjoy the rural environment.
I had good time playing with some kids there, we played cricket for a while, and later I swinged the badminton racket with Nahyan and Nibras (cousins). I played that game after a long time. Last time was back in Elephant Road I guess. We took a walk down the village roads. The huts were surrounded by trees and lowlands from all around. Another fascinating aspect of the place is that a mosque is right in front of the house. But as we prayed the Zuhr Salaat there in Jamaat, we found that these poeple were Ahle Hadith. I noticed some stark differences in there namaaz. Their rules for the times of the salaat were also different. They prayed the Asr jammat at 3:30 pm, by our regulations, the time for Asr haven't even started then. So me and dulabhai didn't join that jamaat, instead we two along with Nibras prayed in a separate jamaat after fifteen minutes. Right after Asr we had our lunch, which was my favorite dish, Kachchi Biriani along with couple of other beef dishes. The food was great and honestly I had more than I expected.
We were scheduled to leave right after Asr, so we couldn't wait any longer. Everyone was insisting that we stay on, but we couldn't for several reasons. So we started on our journey back. This time we took a different route and found it to be much better than the one we came through. We prayed the Maghrib salaat at a road-side mosque somewhere at Pakulla. Fortunately we were right on time for the jamaat. By the time of the Isha jamaat, we were home, way earlier than expected.

This trip came totally out of the sudden, and that doesn't happen usually. Most of times when we go for a day out it takes several days of planning, even if it's for just a couple of hours. So such a trip as this one was unexpected. Alhamdulillah, it was absolutely a great day out.

I posted the photos from the trip on my Picasa photo gallery. You can check them out if you want.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Eid Day

Today was Eid ul Adha, and as expected it wasn't quite different from the Eids of the past years. We prayed the Eid Jamaat at the sector 13 playground which was pretty impressively prepared for a big congregation. Qurbani of our cow was all done pretty fast. I don't wanna get into the details because it's pretty much the same each year. Oh, I forgot to say Eid Mubarak.

Cow Shopping:
Well, my visit to the cow hut (Gorur hut) yesterday is definitely worth mentioning. As I went to the hut last year as well, this year I had no intention to go. Because honestly speaking, I don't quite like the place, to be more honest, I'm scared of that place. But my father was insisting so much, so I decided to go at the very last moment.
We went to the hut of Azompur at sector 6. The place was just as I expected. It was crowded with cows, of all sizes. Huge mass of people moving through it, and every now and then a cow is being led in or out through the crowd. Some of the cows have what I would like to call the 'Bad Cow Disease' , those are the aggressive ones, they look pretty frightening, swinging there heads violently from left to right to get free. That's the scary part of the whole affair. Another interesting thing about the huts is that most of the ground beneath your feet is covered with damped cow shit. Anyway, I guess everybody has these experiences so I'm chopping off the details.

What my father usually does all the time when goes to buy a cow, is that he buys one as quick as he can without spending much time inside the hut, and he doesn't bother for much bargaining. This time me and Dulabhai were determined not to let him do that. So we spent some time surveying the hut and the price. Finally we settled for an average sized one at a good enough price and got out of there.
The cow hut is not the kind of place I wanted to be in, and yet there I was and Alhamdulillah I was out of it unharmed !

Happy Birthday Dear Blog !

That's right, today my blog turns 1 ! Exactly 1 year ago I started writing this blog with the post 'Don't know why' . As I mentioned on that very first post, I'm just writing this blog for myself. In the past 12 months I've written 29 posts, which is not a lot, but not bad considering the fact that I'm only writing about events of my life, not anything else. It's also more than I thought I could write.
Looking back at my posts of the last year I find that my life's been mostly monotonous. There were some exceptions though. Some of those exceptions were indeed pleasant, as my tour to Bagerhat. But there have been shocking events as well, events I never thought I would have to write about, like the departures of Mejo Fupa and Shelly Apu. And another fact about my blog is that haven't been able to write all my emotions down, I couldn't express everything that have been going inside me. Some events, some thoughts are such that I can't even share them in this blog, they will only be in my heart, forever.
Anyway, this little space for sharing my life has been a success, I guess, at least for me. Inshallah in the next year I'll be able to share more, only if Allah gives me Hayaat. But I pray to Allah that I would not have to write about any more events that I don't want to write about, instead I get to write about things that I'm happy to write about. Hope everything goes well the next year. And I hope my life becomes a little more adventurous (safely though). May Allah guide me through the Right Path. Ameen.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Rescue Operation

I was really on a rescue operation last night, literally. Here's what happened. My mom and dad went to Bashundhara City Grand Hall at Panthopath to attend a wedding ceremony of a distant relative. Around 10:15 pm I got a call from dad, telling me that their car was locked with the keys inside, thanks to the driver. So they were stuck as they couldn't just leave the car there and come home by some other means. So I was appointed the rescue mission. I was to find the spare keys, manage a car from one of my uncles and head for the target location to rescue them from this situation. Alhamdulillah I managed to do everything nice and smooth. Within an hour we were back on our way home. Thanks to Allah I was successful in this sudden rescue operation.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

My wish on the V-Day

Today is 16 December. 36 years ago, on this very day, our struggle from freedom was finally over. After 9 months of grueling battle, and with the cost of over 3 million lives, our land was finally free from the Pakistanis. Our army was mostly formed by the common people; the farmers, laborers, students, the general people of Bangladesh. I'm not a columnist, so I'm not going to write the history of the war. What I want to say here on this day, is my wish on the day of victory. It's not only my dream, it's the dream of every true Bangladeshi, it has been our dream since we earned independence. My dream, our dream is to bring the war criminals of '71 to justice. These are the people who helped the Pakistanis to kidnap, murder, rape thousands of Bangladeshis during our struggle for freedom. They helped our enemies to identify the freedom fighters so that they can kill them, to assassinate the intellectuals so that Bangladesh can never stand on their own feet, and to rape thousands of our mothers and sisters. Moreover, these animals did all these heinous crimes under the Holy name of Islam!
Even after 36 years of independence, the people of this country didn't see justice being served to these animals. Moreover, even though we have thousand and thousands of eyewitnesses against them, these criminals are living large and in charge. We even had to go through the torment of seeing those people in political power, waving the flag of free Bangladesh on the hood of their cars. I guess that's the biggest scar in the face of Bangladesh.
During the reign of the current interim government, we have seen things that we never thought we could see. We saw the corrupt being unmasked, being tried for their crimes against the country. So the people are hoping that the government will also take steps for the judgment of the war criminals. May be I'm hoping too high, but remember that everything is possible if Allah wants. So on this day of glory, we pray to Allah that the war criminals of 1971 be brought to justice. To honor the 3 million martyrs who have given their lives for the freedom of this nation, there is no alternative to putting an end to this curse we are bearing. So let's spread the word, let's honor the martyrs, let's honor our country, by bringing the war criminals finally to justice. This is my only wish on the day of Victory. May Allah give peace to those who died in the battle for our freedom. We know the war criminals can never escape the judgment of Allah in the afterlife, but we also want to see the same in this life. May Allah help us in this cause.

A guest from London

Nimmy Aunt is staying with us for the last couple of days, she's visiting Bangladesh after more than a decade. Their family got very close to ours when my parents went to London for higher education. My bro and sis have some great memories with Nimmy Aunt (I don't, cuz I wasn't even born back then. Damn!), that's why they are really happy to spend some time with her, chatting about those days in London. I wish I was there with them too. May be someday we'll visit London again (and this time I'll be there with them) and be her guests instead.

Net woes gone

The internet connections were bugging me. I've tried 'em all since I came to Uttara. First we tried 'broadband'. It's between the inverted commas because it's actually slower than dial-up (believe it or not). The reason for that is, most of the broadband providers in this country split up a single 256/512 kbps broadband line among 60-100 subscribers! So the share of the bandwidth that you get is miserable. So, bye bye 'broadband'.
Then I tried dial-up. There are some very attractive packages on the market currently, and I've used them a lot during the last 1.5 years. They give you 100-110 hours for a month just for 300 bucks. Sounds great, until you check out the speed, which is slower than a snail I guess. Moreover, the Fiber Optic cable connection of the country gets snapped every now and then (I don't know why that happens). So working on the net meant hitting the reload button over and over again until finally the page you want arrives (not without errors in it). 'The information superhighway' became a narrow alley with a lot of junk. Being frustrated with all this, we tried Dhaka Phone's internet connection, they are the first private land phone providers in Dhaka city. Their speed is better than dial-up, but the problem is their rate, 0.3 taka/minute, which is quite high if you want to use internet for long sessions.
And then finally we decided (me and my father) to try Grameen Phone's internet. The unlimited connection costs 1000 bucks per month, i.e. no limitation on the amount of usage. My uncle's company (Knittex industries Ltd) is a corporate client of GP's Business Solutions package. In that package, unlimited internet costs 850/month. So I decided to take a SIM and try. I was not disappointed. The speed is fair enough and connection seems reliable. By the way things are going, I think I've finally found a long sought solution to my internet woes. I needed to solve the problem quickly as I'm currently working on 'AUSTronics', the first ever online magazine for the EEE department of our university. Now that I've got a good enough connection, Inshallah I'll be able to work without much trouble. Alhamdulillah, I'm back on the highway!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

The Merit List - Revisited

The merit list for the semester final of 2nd year 1st semester was out today, and Alhamdulillah I stood 11th! It was a bit unexpected, but thanks to Allah, my name's on the list. I strongly believe that this is a direct gift from Allah, as I'm sure I don't study even as much as 1/3 rd of anyone else on that list. I was on the merit list of the very 1st semester as well, I stood 5th then and got 18000 bucks. Then 1-2 was not so good, and I was way out of the reach of scholarship.
For the whole 2-1 semester I never thought that I have any chance of coming up with a good enough result. Even after I gave the final exams, I wasn't hopeful. But the results showed that most of the students ended up getting low scores. My score in Mechanics is what I think was the deciding factor, and also CSE, on which I got A and A+ respectively. Anyway, It's great to be back on the merit list. Moreover, Inshallah I'll get 9000 taka as scholarship! My family is ecstatic, especially my mom and my sis. Thanks to Allah for everything.