Days of My Life

Talk about daily life of a teenage girl in Iraq, and days of suffering and success. My nick name will be Sunshine..

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Um Al-Rabeeain operation..

Couple of days ago, I came home after I spent long time trying to find an open road in the hot weather, as soon as I came home I had my lunch and went straight to bed, I had a long nap! I was really tired.. but at night I couldn’t sleep well.
I think I fall asleep at 1 am or so ! at 5:00 Am , my dad awoke me saying “WAKE UP SUNNY, we have inspection” I was asleep and wondering with myself “what?! ” I wore my robe and sat in the living room, I was still sleepy ,yawning and wearing my pajamas as well as all the family members, the soldiers were Iraqi ,so polite, and they didn’t break anything, actually they apologized for awaking us .. we’ve been inspected by national guards many times, and twice since the operation started, and in each time they were nice and respectful..
Then I went to bed ! and woke up at 7:30 to study, because I had an Arabic exam (preparing for the sixth grade), at 8 am the driver called me saying he can’t come , he was stuck in the road, and he said the bridges and roads are closed and there is no way I can pass to the other side of city, so I called the teacher and my friends and postponed the class..
Next day, I spent 2 hours in my way to the teacher’s house, at last I was going to cry whenever we enter a road we see tanks and try another one, however, I reached late, and in my way home I was stuck in the road again for a long time.. but I know the national guards are doing a great job and catching the bad guys.
I heard that the Drs. in the hospital made a small celebration and prepared lunch because they didn’t receive injured people due to explosions in the last few days, they were so happy .. Everyone here is in high spirits and feel there’ll be a better tomorrow..
This mission is great, so many terrorists were caught, and I can feel the difference, people go out and talk feeling safer than before, I don’t hear shootings and explosions as much as I used to,I can say they are 90% less..
Yesterday I was in my way to the teacher’s house, and was smiling the whole way, I didn’t see residue of car bombs burning nor bullets’ covers, or any signs for a previous fight.
I know there is still a long long way till Iraq heals and return to the way it was before, and there are billions of things need to be done, but I am trying to focus on the positive things, everything has a solution the only thing we are seeking for now is safety, it is a great bless to have safety, I didn’t know how important safety is till I lost it, life without safety is unbelievable, there isn’t any word can express that, imagine yourself among criminals having guns and killing everyone around you and you can’t protect yourself, it is the most horrible thing that can happen to anyone , and I hope those events I and every Iraqi witnessed will be only memories and stories we tell to the next generations..
Even my 4 years old brother noticed the change , yesterday we were playing, he said he’ll go downstairs to bring his toys “ alone”, “there’s no explosions today” he said,, I was shocked and thought wow even a 4 year old kid noticed that!! I hope he can get better and start speaking well again (few months ago he lost his ability to pronounce and create sentences correctly when a car bomb exploded about 30 meters away from our house, he was in the bathroom alone and got panicked and since then he stutter a lot)..

In these nights I sleep comfortably, at least I can’t hear my heart beat ! time I hopefully night bruxism will stop, I still suffer from killing cramp in my jaw, now I spend more time in my room and even change my clothes there !!
There are a lot of things I want to do in the coming days, not now, but within a month or so to make sure the situation will remain good, I want to fix my room, and hide the places that were damaged because of the fights I am excited.
May god bless Iraq, and National guards ,and save everyone ..

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Keep the innocence..

A new operation started in Mosul last Saturday at 6:00 am ..
On Friday, at 11 Pm I was answering my E-mails, and reading my comments, when my friend phoned me saying “there’ll be curfew” and she said she doesn’t know for how long ! so our Arabic lesson should be canceled! I went downstairs to watch the news, there was this announcement:( to the citizens’ of Mosul, we knew from our resources that car bombs entered Mosul and the targets are citizens and the vivacity centers, inside the city and the countryside, so to ensure the safety of the citizens of Mosul City, it has been decided that : starting from this night there’ll be curfew and everyone don’t follow that, will be consider as a suspect for the national guards and US soldiers).
I told my grandparents and my mom at once, and also sent messages to my relatives warning them, and went to bed, it wasn’t the first time we have curfew lasts for awhile, ( we have curfew everyday starts at 10:00 Pm and lasts till 6:00 Am ) but I felt scared when I read “car bombs entered Mosul” and spent the night suffering from insomnia, I remembered all the times I saw the house damaged and wondered if my family members were alive and well or not , and hoped it will never ever happen again ..
In the next morning I heard in the Radio that the new operation Started, I felt relived, because I know the reason behind this sudden curfew.
In the first two days, we couldn’t go outside the house, but on the third day the national guards allowed us to walk in the street ..
Everyone knows the new operation may starts in every sec , and the curfew may last for few weeks probably, so my dad bought every thing we need, rice , flour, eggs, cheese ,oil, meat , vegetables , fruit, etc. but there are many families can’t buy all those stuff , and live day by day, so when the national guards allowed the citizens to walk , many people started to do shopping, but this time, the prices were doubled or got higher 30-50% ..
It breaks my heart to see my people living under hard circumstances, there are many issues need to be solved, like economy for example, and many other things, but who cares ?!! I think about those problems more than the PM ,I guess !! .
On the third day, grandpa saw our neighbor sitting on the side walk with some other neighbors, he joined them, they spent some time talking and drinking tea, then a fight started in far away neighborhood, dad immediately harried to carry Yosif inside , as soon as he carried Yosif a bullet hit the pavement where Yosif was standing !! I am so thankful it didn’t hit Yosif ..
All the men ran inside their houses leaving the chairs and tea out .. thank god no one was injured ..
In the next day, everything was calm, so we went (walking) to my dad uncle’s house, we spent about two hours or so there, and I met their relative who rent a nearby house, and it appeared he’s one of my fans :D he’s well educated and interested in reading books about policy and history..
Today we didn’t have curfew, so I attended my Arabic class, and spent about 2 hour trying to reach the lecturer’s house, the roads were closed and there were many tanks in the streets, and many check points, the road was so crowded and there was a woman needed to go to the hospital very fast, and the driver was shouting telling the national guards to allow him to go to the hospital , I had to traverse 6 districts to find an open road !!..
The situation today is not good, we heard many explosions and shooting.. and there were sounds of helicopters since the early morning, as well as many tanks as I mentioned ..
Because of this military operation, and that affected my schedule, I was planning to start the chemistry, physics, and mathematics’ classes on the fist of June but now I can’t, because not all of my friends got high marks and qualified to skip the final exams..
I really hope Mosul will be free of terrorists, I don’t mind spending 3 months stuck in the house, if there’ll be a happy end, we want to live in peace, we are tired of the continues fights, kidnapping, and killing. all Iraqis want their lives back, I want to go back to my room and sleep there, and I am eager to the day we’ll fix our house and be aware it won’t be damaged, whenever I look at our walls or my closet and see the bullets and shrapnel, my heart breaks, each damaged corner in the house has a painful story ..
I want to be able to walk freely in the streets without being afraid of terrorists, many times I wonder, god created us all equally, and gave us mind to think , and feelings to sense, everyone like children because they are so innocents, why some of those children grew up and became evils ? why people fight each other ? I can’t understand that, why someone wake up in the morning and his attention is to kill ? I can’t understand the reason that motivate people to kill, sometimes they kill because of nationality!, religion!, race, some times I wish everyone can remain a child to keep the innocence!
Stay safe ...

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Awesome trip ...

It has been a really wonderful week, we celebrated my mom’s birthday on 25/4 and we had such a great time.
On Wednesday 31/4 we went to the North of Iraq, with many of my mom’s work mates, all of them were either doctors or dentists, about 7 families and 20 HANDSOME GUYS , I had fantastic time, my parents dedicated this trip to me for my success in school ..
At 2:00 pm, on Wednesday the journey that I will never ever forget began, the driver came and we went to al Jamea street where we decided to gather, and at 3 pm the bus came, with 3 singers and two musicians!! we stared to acclaim and sing Iraqi songs, as well as Arabian songs, the two musicians spent an hour and 20 minutes trying to fix the note to start !! we also spent sometime waiting for the US troops to open the road ….
The funniest thing is the musicians got angry, they were old (about 60 years old or so) and they knew only the VERYYYYYY old songs, and we wanted to sing the new Iraqi songs, one of them shouted “ GUYS, either we sing or you” so everyone answered “ WEEEEEEEEEEE” it was really funny.

At 6 pm we reached Dhook, our first stop, in a place called “Dhook dam” .
It was is a really nice place, we stayed there till 10 pm, first we took pics near the waterfall, then we took the kids to the play yard, my brother was so excited, he’d never seen such a nice play yard before.After that Dr. BD, Dr. A, my family and I climbed the mountain, and we took many pics near the lake .. then we ate delicious ice cream, after that the Drs. put some great Iraqi music (I brought the CDs :D ) and started to dance in the street ,the famous Iraqi dances and Dabkas , then a man in a nearby small shop played Kurdish music, the guys didn’t know the right way to dance Kurdish Dabka, so a Kurdish man came, took out his handkerchief, caught a Dr’s hand and started to teach him, then all the guys took each others’ hands and started to try, after 10 minutes they became practiced, and started to dance Kurdish Dabka with the Kurds ..
When that man came, I felt blissful, I was assured that Iraqis are united no matter what others may say, I was acclaiming and taking videos, my mom came and said “ you see, Sunny. The Kurds like us, that’s why they came to teach the Arabs their dance, because we are all Iraqis”.. I nod my head, and was speechless .. and she’s right ..
The guys kept dancing for hours, and everyone was clapping, even strangers stopped by and shared us our good time ..
At 10 pm we left Dhook and went to Serseng, we had dinner there, and spent the night in a small Motel..
In the next day, I woke up at 7 pm, opened the window and for the first time I didn’t see destroyed buildings and destruction, instead of that I saw a great view, blue sky, and mountain .. I had my breakfast while I was enjoying the view..
At 8 pm, my mom and I went out to see the city, so we went to the nearby markets and walked in the streets , I felt so safe, I didn’t see a soldier, nor tank, I didn’t hear an explosion nor shooting, I wasn’t afraid of terrorists , and walked freely with my mom, I didn’t have to worry , I was happy ..
At 9 pm we came back to the motel, and waited for awhile till Dr. BD and his friend came, the were arrested by the Kurdish security men because they took pictures while there was a special celebration for Kurds .. they spent two hours in the investigation (you can read about the details when Dr. BD write a post )..
Then about 10:30 Dr. BD and Dr. A came and we went to Ashawa, a place near Dhook, with big waterfall and beautiful view ..
For the Iraqis, impossible Is nothing, we love picnics and parties a lot, and we have many kinds of dances, each city has a special kind of dance , Iraqis are very good dancers, and we have unbelievable ability to amuse ourselves ..
The Drs. took a generator and climbed the mountain carrying it !!! YES!! whenever two guys feel tired other two Drs. take their role, and the others carried the speakers and laptop..
In Ashawa the first thing we did , was taking pics near the waterfall, and then we put REALLY loud Iraqi and Kurdish music and all the guys started to dance, then other guys who were nearby came and started to dance with our group, they were kurds, and so good dancers..
My brother become very good dancer, he learned fast and had great time, and he kept saying “ I’m so happy, and I like all the Drs.” .
It’s the first I see him enjoying his time and feeling safe to walk away from my mom..
At about 12:30 am, we celebrated a Dentist daughter’s birthday, I bet she’ll never forget this birthday ..
Ashawa is one of my favorite places, the mountain is big and has many stone colors and inclinations, I felt a bit tired so I put my head on the chair to rest and enjoyed the view..
Then in the afternoon, we went to Dhook, first we visited Mazy supermarket, which is awesome, and huge. Then we went to Dream city .
I didn’t go to amusing city since I was 10 or 11 years old, and I’d never seen in my life amusing city more gorgeous than Dram City, it is definitely “Dream” city ..
Everyone had fantastic time, I enjoyed every second, walking freely, hearing loud music, and feeling so safe, there I saw my dear friend Rezan , we didn’t see each other for 3 years, she had to leave Mosul because of the bad situation, It was great to see her, we took many pics, and then we saw another friend Zainab, it was beyond anyone’s imagination ..
Dr. BD and I were walking when he said “ I feel like I am in Baghdad” at that time I was thinking about our old days in Baghdad too…..
We played many games, and I felt like I am the happiest and luckiest person in the whole world.
While I was waiting my turn to play a game, I met a Kurdish woman, she said something I didn’t understand, I know only few Kurdish words, then she started to explain by signs, she understands Arabic but don’t have the ability to create a sentence and speak, we spent half hour trying to communicated by signs and with few words we know . we were able to understand each other hardly .. (she said she liked my clothes a lot ) ..
The funniest game we enjoyed is a game called “Disco” , Dr. F insisted to play it while he stands in the middle, it wasn’t a wise thing to do, because of the fast rotation and vibration, Dr. F’s leg slipped and fell and started to move from one side to the other, thank god he didn’t hurt himself, but when he came out everyone was laughing at him, and joking.. At 1:30 AM we went back to our motel, I didn’t come back home late for more than 5 years!! Because it is not safe in Mosul and we have curfew starts at 10:00 pm everyday ..
We spent our way singing and dancing , and by the time we reached home everyone was exhausted and most of the Drs. slept without changing their clothes, including my family members, but for me, I wore my pajamas and brushed my teeth as well :D..
Next morning I woke up at 7:30 prepared our stuff, I didn’t want to leave this place at all, it is so safe and the nature is beyond description..
At 9:00 pm we went to a place called “Karka” it has a small waterfall, it was the first time I see this place, and it is nice actually but need a lot of care to make it better.
Anyway, my sister and I claimed the mountain with Dr. BD and this time I fell, hehe .. we took many pics and spent wonderful time. .
My problem is the fear of heights, I can’t look down, if I do, I feel dizzy, and close my eyes immediately, but Dr. BD kept encouraging me to get over it..
We left Karka and went to Anishky cave, as soon as we arrived we heard loud music, and all the Drs. started to dance as soon as they entered the cave, it was great ..
Then two Kurdish men started to dance Dabka, I’d never seen this kind of dance before.

Then the Drs. joined them and started to dance like them and went all around the cave dancing this dance. This is the Kurdish folklore dress .. Then we decided to go to Soolaf, to have lunch there ..
I had extraordinary time there, we had lunch in very cute restaurant, the view was unbelievable, we ate delicious Kabab..
I took this pic from the restaurant..

Then we returned to our bus, but before we leave, we played loud music, the Drs. started to dance in the street and another group of tourists joined them, and I had never seen such a great performance before..
Then a man from the new group who joined us said “ Guys, won’t you show the guys Karbala’s Dance?” and they started to dance Karbala’s dance, which is really cute ..

Note : those guys who were dancing, in the pictures i published , are not from our group..

Then all the guys danced on a song called “Hedi” the song says (there isn’t any difference between people, nor Muslims and Jews … etc) everyone was singing this song, acclaiming and dancing.. Then we returned to Mosul, we spent the time in the bus singing as well!!, then the Drs. sang a song and dedicated for my mom, they like her because she take good care of them, and make them feel they’re in their home, then Dr. R (who’s from Basra) sang a song about expatriate , Dr. F’s eyes filled with tears, he didn’t see his family for some time.
Dr. F is very kind person, and he smiles the whole time, beside he’s a great dancer ..
I was actually surprised how the Drs. have such great voices, if they don’t succeed as Drs. they can be great singers hehe, and many play drums perfectly well, they impressed me ..
I met great people in this journey, like Dr. R, I didn’t know anything about Basra and he spent some of his time talking with me about Basra, all the Drs. left good impression , they are funny, like to enjoy there time, very respectful and kind ..
When this group from Karbala came, I was shocked because of what I see in TV. I didn’t know the people in Karbala have such a nice spirit, I am so glad I got the chance to meet people from different Iraqi cities, and know more about the citizens of my beloved country …
Everyone needed that journey, we didn’t have fun for long time, that’s why we spent the whole time singing and celebrating ..
I wish the war will end and all of our days will be peaceful and nice, like the days I had ..

Sorry, this post was long.. but I wanted to mention most of the details to make you see through my eyes .