A very special moment

What started off as a “work” assignment last weekend turned out to be an unforgettable experience.
Though my Arab colleagues were unable to explain to me fully what the assignment was all about, I could gather it was something important for having me be at work on the regular day off.
While it was important since the high and mighty of the local government were present, what interested me more was who the whole event was for – a lively and boisterous group of specially-abled young men and women as well as children.
The “Bahrain for All-All for Bahrain”-organised gathering got together this energetic group, who were treated to an afternoon of song, dance, music and art in the true Bahraini-Arab tradition.
Having completed the formalities of meeting with officials, I got around to interacting with these very special people, who, despite the language barrier, managed to “talk” and express themselves, not once showing they were “different”. They laughed, joked, talked and gestured like everyone else and showed what having a positive attitude towards life could achieve.
Not only them, their minders – teachers, parents and care-givers – were as enthusiastic, making sure they had the time of their lives interacting with the so-called “normal” humans. They enthusiastically posed for pictures, got together for group shots and took selfies with officials and others.
I took a lot of pictures – some of which are shown here – all the time thinking how positive these children, men and women are and how enthusiastically they have taken to their special situation when even we, who are “normal”, are full of negativity, apprehension and stress.
We have a lot to learn from who we may think are less privileged and who many of us sometimes look down upon. God created all as equals but some of them are special. It was a privilege having spent time with these very special people!

Morning feast

Nothing like a traditional Bahraini breakfast at the start of a working day. And that’s what happened today.
It always happens. I start work very early in the day and that means no (or a very hurried) breakfast. That also means I have to ‘exist’ on tidbits (and the occasional tea and coffee at “peepa” time).
But that was not to be this morning. Having finished work on the month’s magazine issue, I had some spare time and that prompted me and a colleague to take a 15-minute walk to the Old Suq. And what better way to celebrate the rapidly changing weather (it’s actually getting pleasant now) that parking ourselves at the Manama roadside cafe and having our fill.
Work could wait (there wasn’t any in the day, anyway) but this opportunity does not come often, especially on a weekday.
We ordered liver fry and tomato scrambled egg along with plenty of local leaf and the traditional ‘khabas’ (bread). Of course, there was Sualimani Chai (Black tea) to wash it down with.
It’s an understatement to say we had a great time. We absolutely loved it, especially since it’d been a while since I had this stuff.
The rest of the day was, well, well-spent after the perfect beginning.
And, just for the record, we spent a dinar and a half only ($4) for the spread!Value for money, certainly.
As for the “peepa time”, that’s quite another story!
Watch this space!!

The layered paratha

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The typical Punjabi weekend breakfast, though we do not do this very often. The ‘lachcha’ (layered) paratha, the pachranga (mixed) pickle, maah ki daal and fresh curd.
No, it isn’t a healthy meal (plenty of oil or ghee) but awesome in taste and looks.
And, yes, I do not make it any differently than anyone else so, for the recipe, Mr. Google is the best bet!
Try it!

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