Sunday, January 15, 2006

Sunday Bloody Sunday

Routine (noun):
  1. A prescribed, detailed course of action to be followed regularly; a standard procedure.
  2. A set of customary and often mechanically performed procedures or activities.
I'm in a really structured phase of my life right now.. very totalitarian. There's a set rhythm to my existence and its not such a bad thing. I am, by nature, a man who likes his routine.. a comfortable and predictable lifestyle where I derive pleasure from the little things. I broke out of that for a while, lived a couple of years of spontaneity and it was quite a ride. I figure somewhere in the middle is about right, and I'm getting there.. slowly but surely, I am. For now I'll re-embrace the fuzzy warmth of predictability, because my entire life is getting an overhaul within 5 months.

We've been messing around with the new xbox that's been out, playing online with people and all that cool stuff.. its weird playing with someone who's not there, but it definitely fosters a team mentality between your friends when everyone's sitting around cheering you on to beat the person on the other end of the line.. I think we all like each other just that little bit more now.

I've recently discovered the true value of winter accessories. For a very long time I thought that any man wearing a scarf and gloves was a sissy-man who couldn't face the cold with the steely grit and determination required from a member of the XY club. With age and experience (and a hefty dose of estrogen), I learned that there is nothing wrong with protecting yourself from the cold. I even went out and bought me a pair of gloves and a nice warm scarf, and they've come in very handy on those frosty morning walks to the hospital. Masochism in the name of machoism gets you nowhere.

They're plain and black, by the way. Just the way they should be. *manly grunt*

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Hi ho, Hi ho..

I knew it wouldn't last for very long, this winter break of mine. As expected, its time for me to go back just as soon as I've started settling in. Its been a nice little break from everything, saw a whole lot of people I haven't seen in a while and spent some quality time with both friends and family. It feels good catching up on stuff with everyone, and you can almost sense the age creeping into our conversations as they start to revolve more frequently around adult issues such as jobs and whatnot.

Squeezed in a round and a half of golf with quite a few breakthroughs. I suppose golf is one game where, if left to simmer for a while, the results aren't completely disastrous. Sure, practice keeps you in shape.. but if you don't play for a few months then it won't exactly dismantle your game. In fact, if anything, I feel that a few months off gave me a new approach to the whole concept of the golf swing.

I was contemplating the other day how faultless Bahrain seems to me when I'm not here. The sense of longing for home and family overwhelms everything else, and I find myself wishing I was back on a more permanent basis. It only takes a few weeks here for reality to slap you square in the face and then you start remembering all the little things that you dislike about this country. Don't get me wrong, I still love every minute I spend here.. but there are lots of issues, be they political or societal, that really rile me up. Seeing that I won't be living here for a very long while yet (I WILL come back eventually, coming back too early is just career suicide) I find myself hoping that things will change to the better by then.

To end this post on an even more somber note, a piece of unfortunate news has just filtered through. We employ a cook/driver who lives in a room attached to the house.. great guy, a very hard worker whom we all like very much and consider a part of the family. As is custom in the subcontinent, he had just recently (three months ago, to be exact) returned back to his village to organize and pay for a lavish wedding for his 17 year old daughter. Earlier today he recieved word that his son in law who works in Dubai (its a village of women, that.. all the men seem to come to the Middle East for employment) has contracted pneumonia and was in critical condition in the ICU. An hour ago he got a call and the person on the other line delivered the terrible news that his young daughter had just been widowed. He's been audibly in distress ever since, and we've tried our best to make him feel better but there's really not much one can do in a situation like this.

Just makes you think, doesn't it? May that poor man's soul rest in peace, and I pray that God will grant him and his daughter the patience and fortitude needed to deal with such an unfortunate tragedy.