Stories about childhood

He helped me in so many ways and he didn’t even know it

Like all Karachiites, I love indulging in our local delights – bun kebabs, milk shakes and the famous Tutti Frutti ice cream have all been my childhood favourites. Every birthday, I remember begging my dad to take me to Sindhi Muslim so I could binge on all my favourite foods. I still remember sitting in the back seat with mom and dad sitting upfront, enjoying a plate of scrumptious bun kebabs, when I noticed a physically challenged man manoeuvring through the crowd with a tower of tissue boxes in his arms. He didn’t beg anyone to buy one, instead he would ...

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Humiliation, detention and beatings do NOT help children at school!

The environment in some Pakistani schools, particularly, government schools, is uncivilised at best and tyrannical at worst. While studying Psychology, I was compelled to look back at events from my childhood and school days. There were times in school when a few of my fellow students were mistreated by their teachers and class mates. Every class has a few students who are slightly slow at learning or grasping certain subjects or concepts. In my class, Zara was one such girl. She was mistreated by each and every teacher along with all the students in the class only because she was unable ...

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Shhh… my kids are sleeping… I killed them both

As I write this, my little boy sits next to me with a mango juice box in one hand and the iPad in another. I glance at him and think of how wonderful childhood is. Cartoons of five monkeys jumping on a bed drive you into a fit of laughter. Hugs and kisses are aplenty. He sleeps on a warm, comfortable bed every night. When he’s sick, his mother wastes no time in giving him the medication he needs. When his father comes home from work, he hugs his little boy and kisses his booboos. He’s a lucky, lucky kid. He’s lucky ...

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The 3 greatest moments in the WWE ‘Hell in a Cell’ series

We all have certain happy childhood memories that we cherish throughout our lives. Some of these include playing with our siblings while others circle around spending time with our friends. And then there are those when we just enjoy the sheer thrill of watching someone else’s skull being crushed into the ground during a fight in an arena. No, I am not talking about childhood fights. Quite a few of my happiest memories originated from the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) matches aired on television. The way two wrestlers are left in a cell to tear each other apart is simply ...

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My mother in law’s chicken haandi recipe: The perfect dish for a casual dinner

My recent trip to Pakistan was directed towards Multan – a city which I had only visited once in the past during my childhood when we lived in Bahawalpur many years ago. I took this opportunity to roam around the city, to see what it had to offer. I did a lot of shopping too, from sohan halwa and multani chappals to blue pottery and the likes. What joy it was! As a kid I remember our house always had a continuous supply of Multan’s famous sohan halwa and Kushaab’s dooda. It was regularly served with tea and shami kebabs to ...

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Childhood memories of India

In the early 80s my parents, who were both Indians, settled in Pakistan and got married. Yet, somehow they never left India behind and thus began our annual tradition of travelling to Rampur, India each summer. As toddlers, my siblings and I loved the feeling of crossing the Wagah Border. We used to grin and wave at the Sikhs guarding the border who stood there tall and proud, flaunting their grand horses. And how can I forget the petrichor as we passed by the vast, barren fields – it was truly beautiful. For my parents, India was a safe haven ...

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About a time when friends were real and life was simple

One of the most vivid memories from my early teen years is of my best friend at that time and me, sitting outside his building near the pavement, drinking  Coke and eating sandwiches. I used to take a cab from my house to his and then we would sit outside on our usual spot and talk. We used to talk about nothing in particular and yet, we had so much to say; so many ambitions, dreams, goals, small and big challenges, love affairs, infatuations and yes, personal philosophies and beliefs (even at that age) to share with each other. We were ...

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My mother’s lost letters

One memory from my childhood was watching my mom sit at the kitchen table with a pen and stack of lined loose-leaf sheets of paper to write one of her three sisters a long letter, handwritten in attractive Arabic script. This was one of the only activities that could draw my mom away from her rigorous daily routine of managing every family affair and caring for three daughters with boundless dedication. Taking the time to write letters was a rare respite for our supermom. She would become immersed in her thoughts and intently focus on the blank sheets in front of her, ...

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Tired of cricket? Try gulli danda, pitthu or baander killa!

Growing up in the streets of Punjab, we enjoyed playing popular sports such as cricket, hockey and football, but the real flavour of street games was in our local folk games. This piece is dedicated to all those who have played any of these games in their childhood and I hope it serves as a pleasant trip down memory lane.  Baander killa: The name might sound funny and the game actually looks so too, but it isn’t funny for one person – the baander (we’ll get to that in a bit). Every participant of the game takes his shoes off and places them ...

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Ethnicity trumps humanity in Quetta

My city paints its streets with red as I attempt to write this blog. Tears trickle down my face as I reminisce over Quetta, once known as the city of peace. There was a time when people would take shelter in this harmonious city. Now people run from it. My head aches from the blasts and my heart longs for home. I still remember when I was a mere six-year-old; this city flourished with love and hospitality. My childhood memories are fresh and alive. I remember frolicking up and down the uneven streets of Quetta accompanied by my Baloch, Pathan, Punjabi ...

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