Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Kauthar and the Ridiculous Beard

At the behest of her worn out mother’s advocacy, Kauthar decided she would meet Omar. If anything, it was just another blind date of sorts to add to her arsenal of interestingly bad marriage experiences. The optimism was practically oozing out of her mother as they both made their way to the meeting spot at her uncle’s home.

The cab ride was much shorter than Kauthar had anticipated. She kept mulling over the ever-important questions and thoughts every girl asks herself before she meets a prospective. What should I ask him, I wonder if he’ll be taller than the last one, the dude had better have a nice beard if I’m going to waste my time meeting him, I should have worn black so as not to look so attractive, if he has bad breath I will pretend to be a niqabi.

Kauthar wished she had more time to mentally prepare.

They unloaded themselves from the taxi and walked through the narrow streets to her uncle’s home. Her skirt was too long, and swept up the dust and sand off the badly lit streets. Later she would find her ankles to be discoloured to match the dirt. Her uncle’s building had no elevator, so they lifted their skirts and made their way up the stairs while Kauthar wondered how disabled people could possible live in this part of the country. They stopped at the 2nd floor and signalled to each other to wait to catch their breath before ringing the doorbell.

They were let in with warm kisses and hugs, and intrigued looks indicating that everyone just automatically knew Kauthar was here to meet her supposed future husband. She felt an urge to excuse herself and vomit over the balcony rail. She refrained from doing so, however, and sat nicely with her stained ankles crossed, making small talk about the weather, how awful her last seamstress was, and whether or not she wanted a piece of cake baked in a gas oven. No thanks. Her left eye had an odd habit of twitching under a relatively minor amount of stress, and it was twitching away at the beat of the ticking clock that was to signal Omar’s potential arrival.

The doorbell rang and Omar was let in. He had a seat in an adjacent room with Kauthar’s uncle, and they chatted about the important things she would not have the patience to ask. Minutes later, at the time Kauthar’s eyelid was about to stroke out, her uncle called her into the room. Her uncle was a remarkable character – he was shorter than her (naturally) but was like someone who had swallowed a boom-box: loud, exciting, and always laughing. He had a sickening twinkle in his eye as he summoned Kauthar to make her entrance. She inwardly grimaced and said to herself: get it together, it’s just a random boy to add to the arsenal. Oh yeah, and bismillah.

She entered the room as graciously as she possible could – which was not very gracefully considering she was a bona fide klutz wearing a too-long skirt. She managed however, to walk those few feet and sit down on the sunken couch without major incident. Phew.

The boy, oh the boy was ridiculously bearded – so much so that it covered about 60% of his face she estimated. He was sitting directly across from her and seemed almost too shy to look up when she greeted him. He had the audacity to wear jeans and a vertically striped shirt that was open at the collar. This dude should’ve dressed up Kauthar thought, amused at his inability to look her square in the face. Sure, the beard covered 60% but there was definitely a pink flush to his cheeks. Suddenly Kauthar was very comfortable now that she knew she had the upper hand. She chuckled to herself and felt her eye stop twitching almost on demand.

Kauthar decided to attack Omar with her first question, feeding off of his discomfort: So Omar, why don’t you tell me a little bit about yourself.

They talked about nothing and everything, and Kauthar let herself notice that the boy had a deliciously sweet and easy smile. His eyes were searching, trying to make sense of what he was hearing and seeing. They focused under raised eyebrows when Kauthar asked puzzling questions, and became pleasingly narrow when he laughed at any one of her numerous ludicrous comments. His gestures mimicked hers – a subconscious indication of interest.

Out of the corner of her eye, Kauthar could see her uncle smiling mischievously as though he knew something he would never disclose.


Anonymous said...

Thank You!!! I've been waiting to see what Kauthar has been up to.

LOVE IT!!! Part 2 coming up soon??

hajera said...

oh kauthar ... ;)

Asmaa said...


Nauman said...

I presume this took place in Egypt? :)

Asmaa said...

I'd say that's definitely open to interpretation :P

Sara said...

lol. Love it.