Sometimes as I walk down the street and hear a car horn, I am transported back to a late cold night in Marghani Street in Eastern Cairo. The cold breeze finding its way through my black leather jacket, I pull my laptop case closer to my chest hoping to reach home before midnight. Sometimes, when I cannot breathe through the humidity in some summer days, I become the high school student managing to walk her way back home into a grey maxi skirt on the streets of downtown Abu Dhabi, breathing her way through a much tougher humid climate. Sometimes with a sip of Coca-Cola Vanilla, I am reminded with the joy of such sip while breaking the fast of a long Ramadan day a couple of years ago in Stuttgart, Germany. Sometimes in the supermarket when I come across the candy section, a vivid image of a three-year-old girl holding curly red strips of candy between her hands sitting in a car seat while her father drives in the streets of Orlando, Fl.
Sometimes, memories as such resurface into my mind. Sometimes with such memories tangled into my dreams at night, I loose the sense of place. Sometimes at night I’d hear my mother calling me from the hallway. Other times I’d hear a close friend’s laugh, or a song being badly sung in my undergrad studio and I’d laugh out loud.
Sometimes I wonder whether these days: my teary eyes the day I landed in America after 20 years, my heart dancing in joy catching a glimpse of Manhattan’s skyline for the first time, the first time I walked through Times Square unimpressed, the time I almost fainted and took an ambulance, the first night I slept in my own apartment after a whole month of a horrible commute with nothing but an air mattress and a pillow, and the happiness after submitting the last assignment of the toughest semester of my life.
Sometimes, many times, I don’t even believe that all of this have happened in such a short time.
But sometimes I wonder if these are going to be memories that would one day resurface in my mind.
(Photo courtesy: Marwah Garib)