Orderly Disordered

August 26, 2008

At school, college and now at my home, people come to my room and wonder, “How neatly you have arranged the room!” I used to take pride in these exclamations, until I found out the disadvantages of it. At college, in our boarding, there were three of us in a room. We had our own shelves, beds and racks. As I said, I always kept my rack neat and tidy. There were separate columns for text books, note books, files and other paraphernalia. I kept my dresses on the racks, with separate columns for civil dresses and college/school uniforms/dresses. I prided myself in the “Oh! How neat!” exclamations of my colleagues.
My room mate, Seena was just the opposite. Her books used to be on her bed, below her cot and in her dress rack. Her dress rack was one whole pile of everything, uniforms, civil dresses, socks and towels! Sometimes her files turned open with papers from it flying around our room. Now I feel the fun of running behind the papers, while I used to feel very angry with her at those times. I used to ask her to keep things neat, but she never bothered to do so. I sometimes tidied her shelves myself, but it was of no use. Within two days, the shelf will be looking like a place after a storm. Even with this difference between us, we were good friends, and went along very well, although I used to complain to her of her disorderliness.
But one morning all my pride in my neatness dried up. The story goes like this:
We were asked to submit our semester’s bus fee bill, to get the free bus identity cards for us. Students with the identity card could use the bus service provided by the college. As soon as the notice was read in our class, Seena started panicking. She doesn’t remember where she has kept her bus fee bill. I scolded her for being so careless about the bill, and internally prided myself in keeping all the bills in one of the files. That night I found Seena busy searching her bill. I went to my book shelf, opened the file of bills and started looking for my bill. To my surprise, the bill I was looking for was not in the file! I didn’t know what to do or where to search, for I never kept my things out of place. But still, I searched my bags, my purse and everything I could. It was nowhere to be found. By this time, Seena has dug out her bill form her dress rack and came up with that to me. I told her about my missing bill, and she helped in searching it, but without success. I had to pay Rupees 25 for a duplicate of the bill the next day, to get my bus permit.
After this incident, I started observing Seena more. When someone came to her for her books, she would reply, “It will be on my book shelf, you can take it.”
The person won’t find her book there, and will say so to her. Seena will think for a while, and then answer, “Ok, can you please look in my dress rack, under the blue file near the white CD?”
The person will find it there.
But in my case, if someone asked me my text book, and if it was not on the bookshelf column of text books, then that meant trouble to me. I had no other places to look for, even if I must have misplaced it somewhere. And I hated searching for anything, because searching meant throwing all the articles out of their place!

So what is better: to be neat and tidy and ordered or to be orderly disordered?

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From Dubai to AbuDhabi

July 12, 2008

Yesterday we went to AbuDhabi, a trip we have been looking forward for a long time. There were five of us, as usual, a big and happy family. The trip was to meet our friends, living in AbuDhabi, whom we haven’t seen for years. There were hubby’s friends, whom he was meeting after 10+ years. I wanted to see the places more than meeting with the people, but hubby insisted on seeing the friends. He asked me about a Hadith which asks us to keep our relationship with friends and relatives active. So, I gave up about going to places. But when I reached AbuDhabi, I prayed let hubby get the road wrong, so I can just see some places, from the car. Naughty of me, nah? I was happy when he got through the wrong way once or twice, but that didn’t last long.


A view of AbuDhabi from the creek. 

A major difference between AbuDhabi and Dubai is the peacefulness and cleanliness of AbuDhabi. The streets are clean, with plants and tress on either side of the road giving the whole city a green look. I saw dates on date-palms, but hubby didn’t allow me to pluck them. Some are ripe and brown in color while some others still in their red and green color. In Dubai, I haven’t seen dates on any date-palms, and they look like they haven’t got a drop of water for a long time. And greenery in less in Dubai, because all you see is the concrete buildings.

Deira seen from above, with the creek included.

The cities of AbuDhabi is well-planned and well maintained. The buildings are tall, roads are wider and the parking lots are surplus. In Dubai, roads are narrower with twice as more vehicles in AbuDhabi, and only a few free parking lots are available, making it difficult for people to use cars . Roads are smoother in AbuDhabi than in Dubai. As the airport is far from the city in AbuDhabi, building tall apartments is not a big issue there. In Dubai, the airport is in the heart of the city, making it difficult to make buildings with more than seven to ten floors.
The ‘Don’t litter here’ boards everywhere on the road is a very good idea of the AbuDhabi municipality. I’ve seen people in Dubai throwing away cans and plastic glasses on roads, which I think is unseen in AbuDhabi. And yup, the anxiety of a free parking in Dubai is ten times more than in AbuDhabi. Its difficult to get even a paid parking in Dubai, sometimes.

The Sheik Zayed Mosque in AbuDhabi, the second largest in the world. Bigger than Masjid Al Nabavi, im Madina. Still under construction. The only monument we visited in AbuDhabi.

Well, there is one thing I liked about all these rush in Dubai. Nobody likes to come to Deira, the most populated area, in Dubai. And so, no hush-hush about making the home clean for guests, cooking for them and all that host-activities. We invited all our friends we visited in AbuDhabi to our home in Dubai, but we got a pleasent “NO” from all of them. The reason – the traffic in Dubai!

Traffic in Dubai.