Wednesday, February 13, 2008


The memories in this post have been on my mind for so long, but with the hectic life I have been leading lately I did not have time to write it down. Then, 3eeraqimedic wrote her post and I was reminded of my trip home from school , but again I did not have to write.. so its been delayed for quite some time..
My parents never approved of me walking home..i never understood their fear at the time.. whats wrong with coming home (meshee)?!.. the school wasn’t really far, well ok not that close.. the walk home took me about 30 minutes.. which was a long walk for me at that age.. my school was in an alley that led to the main street, a beautiful crowded noisy, broad street.. I would leave the school and walk to the main street.. filled with excitement and so very proud of myself.. im going home (meshee), which certainly makes me a big girl.. I was 8 or 9 at the time.. I would hang my (Aleeja – that was quite in style at the time !!) heavy with all my books on one shoulder, my hand holding it from falling , the other hand holding my (yomeyya – I think it was 1 Derham at the time.. wooow..!!) tightly..
Once I leave the alley, there used to be a Patisserie shop (not anymore of course).. the wonderful scent of fresh cake would be hanging in the air, attracting me towards the shop like magnet.. (Halaweyyat gold star) it was called – just before they decided to change all names into Arabic.. I would go in, fascinated by the whole experience, buying myself a piece of cake.. I still remember the small space, with me standing in front of the colored lines of square and rectangular cakes.. vanilla and fruit aroma filling the shop.. the (big) boy behind the glass counter following my eyes as they wonder from one colored piece to the other.. they even had cakes decorated with (green !!) cream, don’t know why (or how as a matter of fact!!) I would always go for the green one.. pale mint green.. I can still remember the taste of it.. sweet and creamy.. mmm.. like melted ice cream.. the (big boy) starts to get bored .. as it takes me forever to decide which one to pick.. the pink also looked tasty .. the white was never my favorite..the square ones were tempting.. they looked bigger .. but my eyes would always go back to the green one.. rectangular though it was, which makes it smaller.. well .. ok.. I ll have the green one.. and so I open my small hand , now clammy from tightly clutching the Derham.. and pay for my cake was 15 fils a piece ..!!!! big boy would hand it over half wrapped in a paper napkin.. I take it with great joy.. I thank him and turn to leave.. lucky him .. it must be the nicest thing in the world to work in this cake paradise..
I start my journey back home, walking ever so slowly so as not to drop the cake..i start eating it with such care.. it tasted so good.. I would like to stand an look at the flowers in the flower shop.. but the walk is still long and I shouldn’t be late.. oh and I would love to stop for a little and look at the nice pharmacists .. a man and his wife (I think) working in the famous pharmacy on the block.. still remember their faces..
I walk in a world of my own.. happy with my cake.. never bothered by the crowds and the loud horns.. it would be sunny and the weather is just great.. the sky used to be so a postcard.. a blue that existed only there, and then.. in Baghdad.. I walk and walk ..and cross the side pavement of the Baghdad fair.. it looked so huge to me then.. my parents used to take us there every year.. and we would go home carrying all sorts of gifts and nice things.. when I reach the colored design of Mataam Farooq, I would then cross the road to the public hadiqa, and im finally in our neighborhood ..
When I arrive at home.. I feel so filled with achievement and satisfaction.. im old enough to go home Meshee.. im a grown up now.. I even buy my own favorite cake.. from my own money ..(yomeyya)..
A scented small shop, a pale green cake, and a walk home .. that’s all it took to make me happy then.. how lucky we were.. how happy and peaceful life was..
We never thought at the time how sad we shall be when we look back years and years later..
We never realized..