Saturday, April 07, 2007


Walked to the place where they issue IDs this morning with Nahida. Got the forms, had them filled in and handed them in without a hitch. We were told the ID would be ready in the afternoon and that Nahida could pick it up in my stead because I was going to busy with my Arabic tutor.

Walked back home and finally got a haircut. People will be celebrating. Did a little shopping too, got some crisps, peanut butter sandwich crackers, pomegranate juice, toothpaste, gel, bread, cigs and ate a kebab sandwich on the way too. I'm eating way too many of those kebab sandwiches and they're getting stingy with the vegetables. I need those vegetables.

After I was done with my tutor, Nahida had already got back and repeated the same story as last time about me needing to change my birthplace again and added that the civil worker there showed her a memo was sent from the government cabinet telling them to make everyone's birthplace Baghdad which Nahida explains is a government ploy to permit Iranians to infiltrate the Iraqi population.

I just don't believe it. I'm going to go there tomorrow and try to talk to the administrator. I've thought up of another good reason why I need to keep my real place of birth on the ID, which is that it could convince a checkpoint if it has doubts that I'm Iraqi by showing that I was born abroad. I'm also having to consider calling the British Embassy to check if it would be any problem if my Iraqi passport had a different birthplace when at a passport control. I don't know if they're the right person to ask but I can't think of anyone better to check with.

I'm really trying to understand the ramifications of changing my birthplace should if I'm eventually forced to. My aunt thinks it's a good thing to change it to Baghdad just in case a crazy ruler like Saddam comes into power and removes the rights of people who aren't born in Iraq.

This crazy story has got my paranoia working up. If things were to go the way of the powers that be all my Iraqi documents would state that I was born in Baghdad. And to what purpose?

After having a fit with Nahida, I went on a munchie rampage and fell half-asleep on my couch for a while. I stayed up very late last night chatting to Suzy on the phone. I've forgotten to mention that things have somewhat developed between me and her. We're now playing the roles of a couple, we occasionally stay up late at night on the phone and I blow kisses on the phone and I'm getting away with a lot of perverted talk too and exchange those mushy words too. And I can't believe that she's pointed out that I'm very shy about public displays of affection. That's actually a problem I've had before but how can it be a problem when she also makes it a point that she doesn't want the guys at uni to know about 'us'. A large part of me wishes that I could get out of this relationship but there's no way out, I have to wait another year and a bit.

I'm surprised that sky is still cloudy at this time of year. Most of my memories of Baghdad have a clear blue sky and a scorching sun. Maybe it's normal to have clouds at this time of year but then maybe not I'm not sure. Whenever there's talk about the environment on the tellie of late I'm often wondering what the effects of global warming are on Iraq could they possibly good or are they really bad?

There was a short feature on CNN about banking through the use of mobile phones in an African state by a company called Wizzit. It's such a great idea and would be a great quick solution to the problems that Iraq faces with the banking system which has a knock on effect that produces high levels of absenteeism among the Iraqi army (they leave work to get their wages and give it to their families). It's amazing how there are so many quick fixes to a lot of Iraq's problems which can be cost effectively implemented to improve the situation here. At college nearly all the students in my class have an internet connection at home but my college which boasts about its IT departments doesn't make any use whatsoever of the potential available.

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