Sunday, April 8, 2007

Bet Byoot..

When we were kids, in summer time , my parents as they both were working at the time and not wanting to leave us home alone, would take me and my sister through a long trip to Adhameya where my aunt' s house is, then come pick us up after work.. Adhameya seemed such a faaar place at the time.. entertainment in Amtee's house included many items..
They had swings in their garden ( marajeeh men sodogh!!) .. so we and my cousins would take turns.. I remember how I once fell off and the marjooha banged me on my forehead..
When my parents first drop us, the garage of bet Amtee would be cool and nice early in the day, so this would b the time for Tookee.. i never got to finish, dont know why..
They had a (Taarma) like most of the Baghdadi houses, we would sit in it for hours.. to avoid the heat .. their Taarma was always fun to sit in, with the cool breeze..and we would sit and chat .. silly, innocent chat.. there was also at the time the game of (Tobat) , 2 small balls (Chibin, was it??) which we would try to handle both at a time , i remember it had certain stages (Tappee, Dooraa..) then play with coins, forgot what was the name of that game, we would throw the coin in the air, then try to catch it between 2 of our fingers, in which fingers they get caught decides what this person will b, Jallad, or.. or what ?? my God I forgot the rules of the game.. that used to bring big fights , cause the one who doesn’t get lucky, disagrees with the result and so a fight starts and the shouts (Khalas, Ma alaab baad) reaches Amtee's ears and she would come out and try to solve the problem..
When it gets too hot to sit in Tarmaa in the fiery sun of Tammooz as the noon comes nearer, we would then go inside .. time to play Bet Byoot..
Their Ghurfat el Khottar (guest room ) had 2 couches – Qanafat next to each other.. so we would bring a small charchaf (Sheet)and we would cover the (Yaddat of the 2 Qanafas) with the charchaf and crawl inside.. that would b our home ..
I don’t know why , my older cousin always chose to be Khabbaz !! why Khabbaz, that was always beyond me..he would choose this profession every single time we played.. he would wrap the other smaller charchaf around his waist, puts a small Araqcheen on his head and calls out loudly : im now going to work ..(rayeh lel shoghol) .. I remember I always stayed home !! was I the one to cook ? I cant remember .. why did I forget so many details ??!!.. I can almost see place with my eyes right now..
We all grew up together .. but now , as all iraqiyeen, no one seems to live in the same country anymore .. let alone in the same continent!!
I had a photo once.. of course I left it in Baghdad with all the photos that hold our memories and beloved ones.. it was in black and white .. a birthday of one of us in our house ..ev body laughing so hard..laughs of innocence and not a care in the world , my Bebe (el Hijjiya) sitting in the middle ..i looked at the photo, ev one is now in a different place..UK, Jordan, Holland, UAE, Yemen, USA, only few of them r in Iraq still.. v few.... and my Bebe has passed away many years back of course..
I now envy the family who have relatives living next to them .. we don’t have that anymore.. I think this what makes us always feeling Ghurba.. we went on with our lives, we made friends of our own, but there is nothing like Ahal ..cousins especially.. cause they r the ones u get to grow up with..
Even Bet Amtee exists no more.. I don’t even know for sure if it has been sold out or just rented or what.. as nobody left to live in it..
But Bet Byoot will always linger on in my mind..

PS: my cousin did not become Khabbaz after all, he is now a Senior in his profession..


3eeraqimedic said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yasmin (Blanche) said...

3eeraqi Medic,
im glad u liked the post..
but No.. i dont think ive played Lasteek, ever.. as for hurt knees, i remeber another game, i blv u remember it too.. (Shabateeeet), it was 1st day at school after Eid, i was wearing my Eid clothes my mom made me, an orange pair of trousers + Carohat jacket ( v elegant at the time), we played Shabateeet, and theeeere goes the new trousers, as i was pulled and dragged on the floor by the other team .. i didnt much care ab bleeding knee as much as the ruined Eid outfit.. what would mom say??!!
could u not remember the name of the Coins game?? cant remeber at all..
thank u for yr sweet words..

Dreamer said...

That was a very enjoyable post.
The game involving the jallad, i know there was a hakim, a prisoner, maybe? and a lawyer. but i can't remember what the point of the game was at all. Someone gets "whipped" by the jallad but why?

It is very sad that families are not kept together. In Baghdad we didn't have to travel that far to visit one another, maybe the longest trip is about 30mins. Now we travel from city to city and across countries!

Yasmin (Blanche) said...

hello Dreamer,
Thank u, yes yes that was the game.. quite right, the punished gets whipped .. how did u remember?
i dnt blv there was a point.. just the winner and loser thing..
indeed its v sad we dont live together anymore.. i dont blv there is One iraqi family nowadays who live all together..Allah Kareem, inshallah soon there will b faraj..

3eeraqimedic said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yasmin (Blanche) said...

3eeraqi medic,
Thanks for the info, i did not know any of it..neither ab Shabateeet being a national game !! nor ab the travelling old iraqi families..( u did mean to talk ab iraqi families , right?) but if so, why would they leave? i mean what reason was there behind their immigration?? if u do know , pls inform..

karim said...

صباح الخير ياسمين

متصورين شكد ضحكت من قريت كلمة طارمة .... خرافية

بوست خرافي ....قادم من كوكب اخر ....من عراق اخر

طارمة.... تووكي .... غرفة الخطار .... جرجف ....عرقجين..... مراجيح من صدك .... رايح للشغل .... خلص ما العب بعد.... على هذا المعدل من الكلمات العراقية .... راح تكونيين عن قريب قاموس كامل للمفردات وللتعابير العراقية

karim said...

لالالالا مو طرمة اللي ضحكتني هوايه...هي كلمة قنفات ....خرافية

مووووووووو اعتيادية ابدا

خلص بعد ما اضحك ....ها نسيت اضيف بيت ابو بيوت للقائمة .... راح ابوك كل هاي الكلمات منج


Yasmin (Blanche) said...

the Kawkab u mentioned is iraqna, we r far away but always lives in us.. (Yaskonona)..
the dictionary i was meaning to ask u about but u were busy lately.. whatever happened to yr project? pls start on it if u have not already done so.. the iraqi Qamoos is yr responsiblity..u really need to start working on it.. so we never miss one word of the beautiful khorafeya iraqi vocabulary like we once said.. Sabah el Khayrat to u..

Yasmin (Blanche) said...

indeed , the word Qanafat is one of my favorites..
pls feel FREE and BOOOGH aaaall the words u need.. just begin..
its Iraqna koooollayatna..isnt it??

Little Penguin said...


يعني شحجي و شكول؟

I remember playing bet byoot when I was 5..I took so many chairs from ghurfet il khittar to the garden.. arranged them in neatly order.. like I was in battle ship or something.. I even took food and water and decided to live there.. of course, ija aboya o i7tirag il filim..

It's strange that you mention the families growing apart.. it was only yesterday that me and my brother were thinking of saving up LOADS of money to buy a building somewhere.. so that we can always stay close to eachother and that our children grow up together.. it's a blessing so many of us weren't fortunate enough to enjoy.. inshallah fed zemen min al azman, we'll go back to the 6armaa and the ghurfet il khittar and the qanafat with the yedda.. most qanafat these days come without yedda.. 3alasaas kesh5a..psh..

Yasmin, you're the older version of what I want to be like.. a walking Iraqi dictionary.. :)

the other day I was teaching some friends of mine what Tashit means.. I also explained that you could also say 'legen'.. see? it's coming along.. :)

Yasmin (Blanche) said...

hello Little Penguin,

Legen...oh my God, its been yeeeears since i last used the word..v iraqi..yr remarks r so sweet..i think all (sodogh iraqiyeen) tend to b iraqi dictionaries.. u for one will sure b, as i always sense yr attachment to iraq though u mentioned u never actually lived there..
yr idea of having a Family building is more than lovely..we all wish we could do that..
many thanks for yr kind words..

A&Eiraqi said...

Dear Yasmin

I don't know aht to say
Such a wonderful details of our childhood.

I used to enjoy those games also, the one more we used to play is (Hiliyah) depending on the type(kumsha weyah= if you catch him he 'll be in your team, kumsheh braseh=if you catch him he'll be the charged one) and other types.

We used to play with our cousins also as we were brought up together, now we're distributed allover the world, Jordan, Bahrain, Iraq, UK, Holland and I'm alone in this town.

Do you remeber a game called(Salman Yegool) it was also very nice.

Legan!! I know this word but I've never used it in my life.


Little Penguin said...

never played 'Salman Ygool', but im guessing it's like 'Simon Says'.. where you have to do whatever Simon tells you to..

one of my favourite childhood games was khiteelan.. when I was around 5, I used to call it hide and seek.. then we moved to Syria and my cousins there called it khitteelan.. so I had to adapt..

Yasmin, I try to use legen as much as I can, eventhough I sometimes come off as being a wannabee Iraqi, like those hot-headed teenagers who's entirey vocabulary is made up of 'kharab saddam' and 'sudug chithib'.. I dont think that's all we have to learn from our beautiful heritage..

I even managed to say 'zalan6a7' the other day! :)

Yasmin (Blanche) said...

a&e iraqi,

yes, i did play Salamn yeghool..but nt quite sure i rmember the details..there was one called Hajji Eloo, u have to run and stand on a higher step or something, also Jommeda, and in my later school was called Selleban (from Saleeb -Cross) cause u stand with yr arms straight guarding the prisoned from the other team u got captured..Alwan ..u run and find the color ordered by one of the players..
Yes.. all of wonderful details.. they seem so close..yet so far away..

Yasmin (Blanche) said...

Little Penguin,
Zalantah !!Wow thats a good word..good memory u have..
i salute u..
dont worry, u will never b like those pretentious iraqiyeen.. u sound iraqi in ev word u say..