Friday, 29 September 2006

Cartoons!!

Some Ramadan cartoons sent by my cousin in Beirut (Thank you Rania)
I will put an English translation for our non-arabic speaking friends
-Daily Production Line-
sleep...--> work (sleep)!...--> sleep...--> Iftar...--> Television...--> Suhur...--> sleep.....

- Videoclip-

Oh Allah I am fasting... Oh Allah I am fasting... Oh Allah I am.......

Sheikh: in Ramadan, videoclip songs are Haram, especially Christina Aguilera's new song!!

Wednesday, 27 September 2006

Passing the Time


I have been off work for the past 10 days now and still have few more days to go before I return, it has been a quiet time which was boring at times but very relaxing at other times.
One of the best things I enjoyed doing is going through my favourite blogs (you can find them on my Links) I basically read most of them from the time they started and believe me that was a very interesting read which kept me awake for a long time at night or very early in the morning as I don't tend to sleep for long periods.
It was so interesting to read the stories, thoughts and adventures of everyone, a lot was funny, some were sad and some very educational, it makes me proud that we have many Libyan women bloggers, infact more women than men, most of them have their own careers and dreams and blogging is probably the best way to express themselves, I hope InshAllah they achieve what they want.

Last night I took my children with me to what has become a custom for the Libyans in London, the Pakistani Community Centre which every Ramadan becomes the Libyan Community Centre, it is open every night for Taraweeh and for socialising afterwards, twice a week they have an open Iftar where anyone can come, so I took the children for the Iftar (I usually take them to these Iftars about twice every Ramadan) They really enjoy going there as many of their Libyan friends turn up and they all end up making a great big noise and fill the place with happiness. The only problem I find at these gatherings is when its time to eat, most children tend to disappear behind the curtains where the women are!! my kids didn't have their mother there and so I was like usual when I go there concerned about if they are eating or not, I would be shouting their names and telling them to come and sit with me and in the mean time I get weird looks from some of the men because im standing outside the women curtain and shouting! I know that they do not eat properly there but its worth taking them because they enjoy seeing and playing with their friends, they usually eat at home afterwards.
Something funny happened 10 minutes before Iftar, one of my friends who is the main chef at these Iftars went outside for few minutes then came back to the kitchen where I was talking to few other men, he went straight to the table where there was a dish full of roasted almonds picked up a handful and very proudly dropped it in his mouth and started chewing them with enjoyment on his face, I said to him are you not fasting? My God, the look of shock he had on his face with his eyes wide open, he ran to the bin spat it out and rinsed his mouth and was very angry with himself for forgetting, we all thought it was funny and laughed.
The Iftar was delicious as usuall and it is really nice seeing so many friends that otherwise you are not able to see because of long distances and other circumstances.
Update
SafiaSpeaks suggested (read comments) that I tag readers to tell us how they broke their fasting by accident, so go on let us know your funny stories.

Monday, 25 September 2006

My Daughter's Birthday




My daughter is 8 Years old today
Happy Birthday Sweetie

Ramadan in London

Yesterday evening I decided to do a bit of Ramadan food shopping and so I went to the best area in London for middle eastern food. Wood Green is in North London and its known for its large Turkish community and its where most of the Libyans do their food shopping in London.
The main road in Wood Green, Green Lanes, contains a huge number of mainly Turkish and some Greek shops, restaurants and social clubs, it is the place if you want to enjoy Turkish food such as a Lahmacun (لحم بعجين ) or Pide.

This is the famous Yasar Halim Turkish supermarket, butcher and bakery, this place is known by the Libyan community as its the only Place in London where you can buy frozen and neatly packaged raw Masareen (مصارين ) for making Osban ( عصبان ) which is called Mumbar in Turkish, the fruit and veg you get in this shop are of good quality and usually can not be found in big main stream supermarkets.

The bakery is really a no go area if you are fasting as it is full of all kind of hot breads and pastries and the smell is just great, you just want to buy everything which is not a good idea.





More sweets and Ramadan Products.
everywhere you go there are helpful shopkeepers that are ready to help you if you want without being pushy.












The street has many gold shops that sell by weight and most of the jewelry is of high quality, all the gold shops were empty of customers as I was walking by them, most people were interested in buying food at that time.




While the Turkish community in London is probably the friendliest Muslims here and are known for their good behaviour and hard work but you cant help but notice that many of them are not fasting and are actually sitting in cafes and eating at many of the local restaurants or just standing in the street smoking.
Many of the Turkish restaurants here are very plain with big tables that you share with others but the food is so good that they get so busy with locals and people from other areas, of course there are many fancy restaurants as well but I wonder if the food is as good.

Well this was my evening on the second day of Ramadan, I did buy what I wanted and I have no doubt that I will be going back there soon.

Check this site for Turkish Cooking: Binnur's Turkish Cookbook

Enjoy your Iftar

Wednesday, 20 September 2006

New Nose

No not me! But thank you SafiaSpeaks for the picture

Well I am back after my brief stay at hospital, the day started early for me as I had to catch a train at 6:30 in the morning to go to hospital where I had to be at 7:30, I was there on time but the admissions department did not open until 8:00.After going through the admission procedure I sat on the same chair in the waiting room for nearly 8 hours! Having refrained from eating and drinking since midnight made it worse but I suppose it was like a practice for Ramadan, anyway I had my operation at 3:30 in the afternoon, after I woke up in recovery it was 5:30, they told me that I would soon go to my ward, that did not happen until 9:30, the reason is "they can not find me a bed" I kept telling them that my family will be worried and I need to talk to them but still I had to wait.When eventually I went to the ward at about 9:30, the kids were waiting for me with my cousin, they had been there waiting for 5 hours and it was way past their bedtime as they had school the next day, they went home soon after they saw me.At admission I filled a form which includes the type of food you can eat so I wrote no pork, since I was very hungry by then (22 hours with no food) I asked the nurse if I could have something to eat, I was told only sandwitches were available which is fine by me so I asked for a non pork sandwitch, 5 minutes later I get a HAM sandwitch, the nurse said that was all they had left, this is St Mary's Hospital, one of the best known hospitals in London yet they only had Ham sandwitches! anyway I ended up eating a pot of yoghurt and thinking that this was not my day and that it will get better.Actually things did get better, the way you get treated medically and personally is first class, the nurses are very well trained and never stop looking after patients, the dinner lady the cleaners and of course the doctors as well are all very friendly and kind and make you feel important, so much so that I really did not want to leave the hospital, I really enjoyed this treatment and the comfort of my great bed which had a remote control to adjust the height and bring the back forward and the knees up, I really wish I could have a bed like that at home.I had to leave the hospital yesterday afternoon after I was checked and everything is good AlHamdulellah, I was given a sick note to take 2 weeks off work and told to come back to remove the nose cast after 2 weeks, in the mean time I have to look like Hannibal Lecter as a friend put it.

Thank you all for your kind and lovely comments on my last post which I really appreciate.

Sunday, 17 September 2006

Nose Job!


I am going tomorrow morning to hospital for a Septoplasty / Rhinoplasty operations, basically this is to correct a defect in my nose which i had since birth which will InshAllah improve my breathing throught the nose.
A friend of mine asked me how its going to feel breathing properly through my nose! i replied that i do not know since i have never had the experience.
Some friends think im lucky because im getting a free nose job, my correction (Septoplasty) operation will be followed by a cosmetic operation to correct the shape of the nose (Rhinoplasty) these two operations are usually carried out together. Rhinoplasty is also one of the most popular nose cosmetic surgery operations (check Michael Jackson's nose!) which is usually done under private care where you get to choose the shape of your nose, mine is done under the NHS (National Health Service) which means I have no say in what my nose will look like, apparently i have to wait months before i get the final shape of my nose.
The operation should be a day job and hopefully i will be back home the same day or next day but I have been given a week off work which is good i suppose but will be quite boring as i wont be able to do much. I will be updating the blog soon InshAllah and maybe even a before and after pictures of my nose :o)

Friday, 15 September 2006

Our Great Libyan Hero

Saturday 16th September 2006 is the 75th anniversary of the execution of our hero Sheikh Omar Mukhtar by the facsists.
Even after all this time the Libyan people and indeed many people all over the world still feel saddened by this great crime, the execution of a hero who was in his 70s (about 73 years old).
His executioners have disappeared down the black hole of history but Omar Mukhtar's heroic memory will live forever, another reason for all Libyans to be proud of their history.

The facsists posing with Sheikh Omar Mukhtar after his arrest




The tomb in Benghazi where Omar Mukhtar was buried, unfortunately this tomb was demolished sometime ago (another crime committed against historical buildings in Libya) Sheikh Omar's body was moved to the city of Sloug where he was reburied.

Wednesday, 13 September 2006

Ajdabiya Needs You!


I have come across this website when i was reading a post by KhadijaTeri about an old building in tripoli.
Youcef has this wonderful website about Ajdabiya , the main reason im mentioning this is the fact that Youcef is trying to save a beautiful historic building in Ajdabiya, this building is called Al-Motsarfiya, this building is being destroyed through lack of repair and bad restoration. Youcef is trying to petition the govenment to save the building and turn it into a museum.

Click the above box for the full story of Al-Motsarfiya building

What Youcef is trying to do is noble and should be an example to all of us, this is our heritage, our history that should be preserved for future generations, who ever built this building and for whom it was built whether the Royal family or anyone else is beside the point. Libya is one of the world's hidden treasures, we should be proud of our country and try our best to keep what has been left to us by our ancestors.

Show your support to this cause by signing the petition tell your friends, family and colleagues to sign the petition, help Youcef with this noble cause.

Libya should introduce Grading and Listing laws simillar to what they have here in the UK, historical buildings in the UK are graded and listed according to their historical values and then fully protected and preserved for the whole country to be proud of.

Tuesday, 12 September 2006

Is this the way to Al-Jazeera?

This morning there was a discussion on the Radio about this video which was made by the BBC because a memebr of their emplyees has moved to work with Al-Jazeera, the discussion was about is the video offensive to Arabs, some people said it was offensive the majority said it was funny and not offensive at all, the video is full of arab stereotyping.
I didnt find this video offensive, i just thought it was tacky and tasteless, I mean if someone was offered a better job at Al-Jazeera or anywhere else that pays better money then good luck to them if they accept the job, i do not think making fun of them or the new employer is ON, this strangely came from the BBC which we got used to respect.


Is This The Way To Al-Jazeera? A BBC London Creation
The Song's Lyrics
When the day is dawning on a muggy Doha morning
How i long to be there with Osama who's waiting for me there
Every lonely news room where i hang my hat
Ain't as half as pretty as where my Shiulie's* at
Is this the way to Al-Jazeera?
This is the end of the BBC era
Dreaming dreams of Al-Jazeera and sweet Shiulie who waits for me
Is this the way to Al-Jazeera?
I'm going to be paid lots of Lira
Storky's* off to Al-Jazeera but the sand is blazing crown
Prince Hamed Bin Khalifa is waiting
Though it may be harder I'll be reporting on the intifada
Just beyond the sand dunes there's a world so new
Oh jilbabs and palm trees and then there's camel poo...
* Storky is the nick name of the employee, Simon Torkington that moved to Al-Jazeera.
* Shiulie is the wife of Simon Torkington who moves from ITV to Al-Jazeera as well.

Monday, 11 September 2006

Remembering 9/11

Today as im sure most people know is the 5th anniversary of the dreadful events of September the 11th, most of us remember where we were and what we were doing on that day 5 years ago, one of London's leading radio station, LBC, is broadcasting from New York this morning as they follow a British mother, Patricia Bingley who lost her only son in this disaster, she gives her thoughts and feelings as she remembers how she used to come and visit him regularly in New York, listening to this lady makes you realize even more that terrorism achieves nothing but heartache and sadness for innocent people.
This should not make us forget all the other victims of war, violence and terrorism, in London, Madrid, Lebanon, Jordon and indeed all over the world there are people mourning their innocent relatives that have been killed needlessly.

Thursday, 7 September 2006

Libya's Fascinating History

I have been checking a website about the Jews of Libya which was offline for some time but I am glad its back online now, it is full of fascinating pictures and facts about the last Jews that lived in Libya.

This picture shows Jews in Hara El-Kebira in Tripoli, shame the site does not say which year this was taken.

I have once met a Jewish man in London who told me that his parents were born in Libya and although he does not know much about the country but he said his mother often cooks Haraime which he said is a Jewish Libyan speciality, the website lists other foods as being Jewish which in Libya are still regarded as traditional Libyan food, whether its true that this food is Jewish or not I can not say but its difinitly Libyan.

I can not say that I agree with everything i read in this website but it was a fascinating read and an important part of Libyan history that has probably disappeared for ever.

Wednesday, 6 September 2006

The Celebrity in me!

I found out about this on The Sultan's blog, basically you upload your picture to the My Heritage website and they match your picture to pictures of celebrities then they tell you who you look like.
I sent mine and the result was as above (sorry for not showing my face!) apparently I am 66% Art Garfunkel look-alike! even though he is very blond and I am definitely not!!
I sent them 2 different pictures of me which look nearly the same, the result of both attempts was completely different, not a single celebrity matched in both attempts. Its complete nonsense as i do not look anything like these celebrities, I wish I did though, anyway its a bit of fun at the same time.
Go on try it, you never know, you might be a David Beckham or a Paris Hilton look-alike :)

Monday, 4 September 2006

Gaddafi: A Living Myth

The English National Opera (ENO) in collaboration with Asian Dub Foundation (ADF) are starting their new much publisisd opera Gaddafi: A Living Myth, which is about the life of Colonel Gaddafi, it will be held at the London Coliseum.
The opera will run from 7 to 16 September and some news papers have giving it good reviews.
The producers said that operas are usually aimed at middle class and middle age people but this play will be aimed at a younger audience.
Whether it will be a success it remains to be seen.

Asian Dub Foundation's GADDAFI: A LIVING MYTH

Sunday, 3 September 2006

My Mobile Phone


As requested by highlander to play the "show us your mobile game" here is mine, its the new Nokia N80, i upgraded few weeks ago and i love it.