I was going to write about eid in baghdad, but I need to finish the diyala thing. Well almost finish it. So i think this may be the last post on Diyala, and if you want more, you can ask. ;)
The day started with me struggling to live from the ground. There's no television here either, but the niceness of the people make up for that. What I mean is here everyone smiles at me. I don't even know them. Even the scary looking people smile. But the soldiers here are not as nice. They scowl and one american soldier raised his gun at my father and told him to stop for no reason. Apparently our family came to close to them. I didn't even realise they were there. The ordeal was quite scary, and as weird as it sounds its because even after spending half my life here, I have never been in such close distance to a foreign soldier. That and its from the fact that during the worst time of Iraq, I was abroad. Anyway, i almost started laughing . The situation was quite funny. One soldier had his gun aimed at my dad. One was running around trying to find the iraqi soldiers, and one just kept repeating a badly rehearsed "asaaallaaam aleeeekim" whilst talking about our family to the wandering soldier. Oh i understood, but I just wanted to see what they would say about us when they thought I didn't understand. But all teenagers are allowed to be a little crazy right?
We were finally allowed to pass, and behind me the tension between the iraqi soldiers and the foreign soldiers was almost tangible. It wasn't like this in baghdad, although I've never been close enough to examine the relationship, but in baghdad everything and the soldiers were a lot more ...separated? The foreign soldiers on one side and the iraqi soldiers on the other side. But here in Diyala, they stood next to one another, and although they looked uncomfortable i realised it was for safety. Gangs are still apparently popular here, and they refuse to become lawful like the ones in baghdad. Diyala's gangs are apparently the teenage farm-boys who steal in order to live. Their lack of education, their lack of money has lead to an inevitable turn to crime. What i got told about them was naturally harsher, but in my mind, it is unfair for me to judge by listening to others. I have experienced no crime here whatsoever. So what if a few guys dressed up in black and agals and stood in corners. They didn't approach anyone, nor did they carry guns. But of course, how can i judge after spending a week there? All I can conclude is Diyala is made up of villages, where sheiks and tradition plays a huge role. Meetings of sheiks were common (and inexplainably booring), and it seemed like an organized life. I still am in awe of the pure culture here. Although much of the culture in the villages was unfavourable to females, it wasn't as bad as you think. And the respect here is also cool. In Baghdad, the youth can get a bit disrespectful, but here, it was wonderful. Each neighbour had such respect for one another.
Now, after visiting Amo X's house or another house, I went home. We had been given large plates of meat from people. hehe. yes you heard right. Meat. So i went to the darkness of our room. It was around afternoon time. So I opened the curtains and bright sunlight streamed in. My brother and father had gone to the bisateen (farms). Although I desperatley wanted to go, its not suitable places for a girl. You know the big bad scary farms. I could get mauled to death by a chicken or goat.... :D
So brother and father came back. Since the house hold was literally split ( one room for men, one room for women), me and my brother and sister had genuinely not talked to each other for ages. So we all talked and talked. Then, food was served. It included a lot of meat again. As a joke, my brother has somehow managed to take a large piece of meat out of his plate, and carry it to our bedrooms. It was funny watching him trying to convince our little sister to eat it. Then, he and my sister suddenly left the room laughing. I sat down and replayed the information my brother had told me about the farms. Suddenly I heard meowing. My brother and sister were leading a cat into the room. They fed it little pieces of meat, while teasing me. I don't like cats. At all.
As i watched the cat jump trying to claw at the meat, my brother led the cat closer and closer. What followed was kind of a blur to me.
I jumped and stood on the bed screaming. The cat came closer and closer, its evil eyes surveying me. So naturally when it approached the bed I was on, I jumped on to the other bed. that is how almost an hour of my time was spent. Jumping from bed to bed. As the cat hissed.
My mother came in after an hour asking what the hosa (mess) was about. After I screamed to get the cat out, she looked at my brother, signed and said " P, why did you use the good meat?".
She didn't say " stop being mean to your sister, its not her fault cats are evil horrible creatures" or " take that dirty clawing cat out of the room". But apparently the waste of good meat was the problem. The cat then went.
I then laughed with my siblings for an hour, before finally going to sleep in the dark where I had nightmares of cats attacking me. I hope you feel guilty now. ;)
And so passed another day in Diyala.
And I might add some Fotos of the bisateen when I am not lazy to transfer them. :D