For so long I tried to write my diary. I started that when I was in the elementary school. I wrote for few days and stopped. Then my grandma gave me a diary book and asked me to write. She used to encourage me for writing. As before, I wrote few days and stopped. I used the dairy book to draw and then my friends used to write memories in it.
In 1996 I went with my grandma to visit her friends. The family was only 4 persons, a grandpa, grandma, daughter and a granddaughter. They were very good friends of my grandma. But the problem was that the grandpa was a really old man and they have to listen to him or something like that. At the same time I had problems in memorizing some of my lessons, those who were about geography, history and specially memorizing poems and parts of the holly Qura'an. This led to a very great deal. They let the grandpa help me to memorize my lesson.
You may wonder how he helped. But don't be surprised. My grandma used to make me take my books with me when I'm staying at her home. So I was carrying my school bag with me with all that I need to study.
After we finished the memorizing he asked if I needed any help in other lessons. I was shocked. Mom at home, grandma at the grandparents' home, and now at the friends' I've got this old man! Anyway I'm doing nothing at their home so why not finishing my homework here and play later. Amazingly, he helped me with my English homework. English was never a problem. My mom and dad took their M.A degrees abroad. My grandma is an American citizen but to be taught by this old man was kind of weird.
Before we leave, my grandma and her friends decided that I would be brought to them 2 days a week or something like that so he would help me. Latter, I found out that he was Arabic teacher maybe 20 years ago. Don't panic. He was really old. He was born in 1926 I think. What I'm sure of he was in the same class in the university with Nazik Al Mala'ka and Badir Shakir Al Sayyab (the 2 pioneers of free verse in Arabic).He was a teacher but more a poet, thinker, philosopher.
First I didn't like it. He was really old and every time I go I feel he is going to die. He used to tease me by saying "What do you know in life? Nothing. Say nothing. Tell me only 3 things that u can do in your life. You only know how to dance." As a teen I didn't like to be teased. I used to say "I know how to draw, read and write". That made him laughs at me each time I say it.
Later, he helped me with all my homework and then I started to go to him everyday, sometimes even the weekends. And when my family was going to a place that I didn't want to go to I used to pretend that I have homework or an exam in order to go to him.
I didn't know what to call him. His family calls him "jido" (=grandpa). And as a student I was supposed to call him "ustath" (=teacher). But in the first place I used to call him "ammo" (=uncle, which is a word used to call any man one respect). In a while, it wasn't a problem what to call him because I discovered he had problems with hearing.
When we finish the homework and we have nothing to do except to wait for one of my parents to pick me up he taught me how to play chess. Then latter we started play many kinks of "tawli" wish was a game men plays in Iraqi cafés. In other times he used to tell me stories. Some of them were historic others about wisdom.
He helped me a lot in improving my composition. He used to tell me the stories or things about life and then asks me to write what I think about it at home and the next time I go to him he would read it and edit my work. And here is why I'm writing this here. He had the biggest hand in helping me to write my diary. I started to write my diary but then for a reason or another I stopped doing that.
Now I don't really write my diary but I do write essays, poems and sometimes short stories which I'm intending to publish them in this blog.
9/26/2005 6:35:31 PM