Friday, April 07, 2006

Who In The World Is Nahida?

Well since Anonymous gave me such good advice about what router I ought to have bought, I think I owe him a response to his/her question about Nahida. I was seriously considering getting the Linksys WRT54G. It was the one model I had looked up intensively on the internet. Yet to see if the model available here in the market is pre-version 5. But oh yeah, I'm definitely going to buy it even though I don't really need it any more. I'm thinking of using it to play Mario Kart on the net with my DS, just hope it'll work better than it did with my dial-up connection. And if the Linksys would work with my ISP using a static IP instead of PPPoE, I'll be able to get a slightly better download rate with my present ISP.

Anyway, so who is Nahida? She certainly is an important character in my life here in Baghdad. To be honest I don't really know what the whole deal is with the woman. So don't be asking me questions beyond what I already know.

The house I live in used to belong to my dad's mum. As my grandma was getting old. She decided to rent out the top half of the house to Fozzy and his wife Nahida to have someone to help her out. My family was in the UK when all this was happening. So my grandma passes away sometime in the early 90s while I was living with my dad in Paris. Fozzy and Nahida stay in the house.

Then around the mid-90s my dad decides to returns to Iraq and moves into this house. So to put it simply Fozzy and Nahida just came with the house. Sure enough their relationship towards my grandma had established themselves as friends of the family. I didn't come follow my dad to Baghdad till a year later.

My very first impression at the sight of Nahida was that she was some kind of spy. I was 12 and all my thoughts about Iraq were strongly influenced by the cold war for some reason. Such cold war paranoia wasn't discouraged when people would whisper bad words about Saddam even in their own homes.

During the following 2 and a half years, I had a much more healthy relationship with Nahida than I do now. Sure I'd yell that I'm thirsty all the time and she'd bring me a glass of juice or something. And it came to down to her having motherly feelings towards me since she had no kids of her own (something wrong with Fozzy's willy after a fall from the 3rd floor during some revolution). But we still had a kitchen downstairs and I'd often do what I can with it.

Fozzy and Nahida assisted my dad with a lot of things, and at some point Fozzy became my dad's man at the farm running the whole show. When I came back to Iraq in 2002, I wasn't on good terms with my dad and lived them instead of downstairs with my dad. That's when my relationship began to turn even more uncomfortable with her. The expression 'familiarity breeds contempt' comes to mind.

There are things that really piss me off about Nahida. For example, I hate it that so much of our stuff is tucked up among her things or how she has to influence anything that's going on. She sticks her head into everything and anything. She'll do stuff with my stuff that without my permission. Recently she took some new pants that my dad had brought me that were too big for me to the tailor who did an awful job on them. And she's so unorganized it's crazy, especially in contrast to my own mother. Oh and she's got this obsession about keeping the curtains closed during the night which drove me so crazy that I removed the curtains from my old bedroom upstairs.

Now my whole family is in the UK and Fozzy is at the farm most of the time leaving the house to Nahida and me. I've moved downstairs but half of my stuff is still upstairs. My dad hasn't given me any responsiblities and for good reason too. I've got a strong record of being irresponsible. Therefore Nahida is responsible of managing my money and stuff for example.

Nahida now does alot for me: waking me up and bringing me a mug of coffee in the morning, bringing me food when I'm in jail, cleaning up the house, doing my laundry, processing any of my government documents, bringing gardeners and plumbers, cooks my food, the list can go on and on. It would be easier if I were to mention the few things I do and say she does the rest. I do most of the shopping and I get petrol for the car, she does the rest. Oh and she's got her extended family and the Sudanese dude that lives with us to help her help me.

So why can't I get rid of her? Well I can't kick her out of her home which is the top half of the house. But why don't I limit my dependency? That's actually feasible. I could start doing all those chores that I rely on her to do by myself. But it's too difficult. The lazy side is too strong in me. It's too difficult to give up all this luxury. And I know I'd be a better person if I was to rely more on myself, but I'm too weak. And it's not as if she's encouraging me to be more independent.

Ahhh finally! Nahida got me my food.

1 comment:

tmpname said...

Ah, thanks -- it makes much more sense now. I'm becoming something like a regular reader and the Nahida question had confused me each time you mentioned her.

Damn, now I have to come up with a user name...