So-called observations

Weird things that keep you awake

Hey everyone, I hope you are all doing great. I know I have been out of touch for a while. I just had a few things going on that kept me distracted. Thanks a lot to those of you who visited, commented and emailed me in my absence. You all are too polite. For some reason I was expecting a “good riddance” email. So as a return for all your good thoughts, here is a post that I had written a couple of months back while collaborating with that hijabi from down under. Oh in case you don’t know her, please click on the link and check her blog. Aaliyah writes about all sorts of humorous situations (and some serious ones too) she gets into while living as an NRI in Australia. Trust me you won’t regret visiting her blog.

(P.S. Her blog also has the other part of this post)

(P.P.S. It was another cool blogger Mahaah who had asked the two of us to collaborate.  So, with credit where it’s due, many thanks to her too.)


It has been a long day. You’ve busted your hind working on that lame project no one cares about. Three days have passed since you last slept properly. The only thought occupying your mind is to just go home and lie on your bed. Gathering your things, you start walking back. You ignore the guy who spat at your feet at the bus stop. There is not even an iota of strength left in you for arguments. Reaching home, you just drop your things on the floor; absent-mindedly shower without bothering to think anything philosophical; and just drop dead on your bed.

However, things do not go according to the plan. That’s because sometimes nature conspires against you to not let you taste the sweet release of sleep. Here is a list of things that can keep you awake.

The Lone Ranger

You are almost asleep and about to revisit your favourite dream of spending that vacation on the beach in Maldives while Katrina Kaif feeds you cherries. However, something starts to bother you. For some reason, Katrina has started singing. But her voice is weird. It sounds as if she is not singing, but making a buzzing sound. Suddenly, she pricks your cheek with a needle. Ouch! And you wake up.

Surprise! Surprise! No Katrina, no Maldives, and no vacation. It’s that foul mutant mosquito that wakes up every night as soon as you turn off the lights and starts buzzing somewhere around your ear. You try to kill it in the dark by swatting, but only end up slapping yourself in the process. As soon as you turn on the lights, it disappears.

It doesn’t bite you a lot, but keeps buzzing around one of your ears. If you cover yourself with a blanket and keep some space around your nose for breathing, the vile thing enters your nostril or worse your mouth.

The Prickly Demon

However, you manage to kill the bastard, after much effort (which included throwing off your blanket, upending your mattress, and shining torchlight in your shoes to find the Satan). You sigh in relief, and bask in the glory of revenge before turning off the lights again.
What you don’t realise immediately is that before dying the princess of darkness managed to land one bite on your back at the precise blind spot that you cannot reach however hard you try? Soon the itching starts. So you try really hard to scratch and end up twisting or dislocating your arm. Realising the futility of your actions, you get up and start rubbing your back against the bedside post like a cow. Still it doesn’t work. In desperation, you begin to wonder if that insanely stereotypical (and offensive) joke about the Sardars is true. You know the one where if they had an itch on their scalp, they would just scratch their palm and place the hand on their turban. In spite of yourself, you scratch the bedspread and lie down hoping against hope.

The Gas Tank

Watching your continuous struggles, Allah ta’ala takes pity on you and the itching stops. You start to relax, but after all that commotion, your mind doesn’t want to go back to hibernation so easily. It starts conjuring random images in your mind. You discard most of them as your conscious brain knows how much you want to sleep. Nevertheless, there are some images you cannot avoid, especially those that are really vivid. And before you know, your senses start reliving some of the terrible moments of your life.

One of the prime ones includes that time when you got a call from your boss telling you, “Ershad, there is a VIP coming over for a visit. Show him the control room and give him an overview of the various units.”

You reply, “Okay, cool,” and prepare yourself mentally for the speech. You check your unruly hair in the bathroom mirror and attempt to flatten those angry strands that seem to defy gravity on all occasions with some water.

The VIP and the entourage arrive in front of the control room. You greet them, and request them to kindly take off their shoes due to the dust protection required for sensitive instrumentation and computer servers, before inviting them inside. In an effort to impress the guests you start slipping in sophisticated technical words that even you don’t understand, secretly hoping none of them is an engineer who can question you back and make you look like an idiot. Everything starts going according to the plan when suddenly you inhale something that can only be compared to death. You realise one of the guests has not washed his socks in his lifetime. What’s worse, you don’t know which one it is who is the culprit (Is it the VIP himself?). The stench is so intense that you simply want to retch and throw up. But of course, you can’t. You keep smiling that creepy smile you had pasted ever since you met them, and keep thinking, “OMG! OMG! OMG! Kill me! Kill me now!”

Soon the nice people leave, but the stench never leaves you. It haunts you in your dreams like it is doing right now. It never lets you sleep in peace.

The Impropriety Danger

If you think that is the worse vision your mind can develop, you couldn’t be far from the truth. After much effort, you finally manage to fall asleep. That’s when your brain starts conjuring up nightmares. Nightmares that are worse than being chased, worse than falling off cliffs, and worse than death itself.

In your dream, you think back of that time when you were travelling on a city bus, and you saw that girl standing at the bus stop. She was wearing a tight pair of jeans, and her back was facing towards you. From that view, she seemed incredibly hot. As you join the other passengers in ogling her, she reaches to her…ahem…derriere, and adjusts her wedgie. And all of you go, “Eww.”

But that’s not the end of it. Your dream transports you to the future. This is the future where you are married to that girl. Both of you are at a family reunion kind of thing where she is talking to the older folks of your family.

“Yes, uncle, I am very well. Ershad takes good care of me.” ….*adjusts her wedgie*

“Abba, do you need milk in your tea?” ….. *adjusts her wedgie*

“Amma, I think I added too much salt in the curry.” ….. *adjusts her wedgie*

Oh the ignominy! The shame! Kaise muh dikhaunga?

You pick up the spade and start digging your own grave when the spade slips out of your hand and hits you on the head. That’s when you realise it was all a dream and you only hit the headboard while thrashing around in your bed. Nevertheless, you are awake, again, and the whole process starts again.




30 thoughts on “Weird things that keep you awake

  1. so finally here you are ,back with a bang post 🙂 loved it.. it does happen to me as well the stench thing ,although it disappears but not from my mind atleast for few hours, sometimes I get get a headache and i am this close to throw up! thankfully mosquitoes spare me but my hubby is always bothered by them..your story reminds me of his everyday tussle in india with mosquitoes.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh I can feel the pain of your husband. Mosquitoes have a thing for me too. If I sit among a group of people, everyone becomes grateful to me as I am the only one who is attacked by the mosquitoes while everyone else can relax.
      But the plus side is that I can win any mosquito swatting contest. Pity the leaders of the world haven’t thought about organising one till now.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Wow, first of all, welcome back!
    Secondly, WHAT?! Hahaha! Wow, i don’t have much experience with mosquitos since Kuwait is too hot for any, so they come alive whenever it rains but then they die like the very next day, but reading that part about the mosquitoes was incredibly hilarious.
    The part where they bzzz around you even when you’re trying to sleep. Used to happen with me in Pakistan. Then there was the electricity problem too.
    And it used to seem like the mosquitos were always more interested in my and my family’s blood more than anyone else’s, maybe they liked the Kuwaiti taste, cause I swear they used to ignore all my rishtedaar from Pakistan and attack only our organic Kuwaiti blood. I used to seem like I’d returned from battle cause of all the scars from scratching. Plus I used to get all those allergies too from the dust. 🤕
    What usually keeps me up though is that stupid voice in my head that keeps on wondering about thing that don’t matter. For example: “do fishes cry?” Or “if we ever discover aliens, will they think we’re stupid for all time we spend studying economics like it actually ever applies to real life? “. Or “do ants have a brain? If so, how do they manage to think with such a tiny one?”
    I think what aliens will find most stupid are my thoughts 😭
    Then often what keeps my up is my sudden midnight craving for junk food.
    Hah, nice post though, Ershad 🙂
    I used to wonder about you while you’d been away.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I guess India and Pakistan have much more in common than culture and food. Mosquitoes among other things.

      Organic Kuwaiti blood? lol haha. I guess everyone likes a bit of change. Mosquitoes aren’t any different.

      Hahaha, I like the questions your voice asks you. Mine aren’t that imaginative. Mostly along the lines of “Why is this fabric so scratchy?”

      Thanks for the great comment Hiba. Hopefully, I will be back to old antics soon.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Hey mate, welcome back!!!
    It was great collaborating with you. Forced me to actively sit and think and write one instead of procrastinating under the guise of being busy doing nothing. We should do some again.
    As always, your post had me in tears. I reread some of the lines several times because each time brings about a set of raucous laughter that scares my cat away. Kaise munh dikhaaonga was my favourite line of all.

    P.S I like the hijabi down under. Might add it on to my bio for insta.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks mate. Hey maybe we can collaborate again and write about things that scare your cat away. Or something along the lines of weird conversations we have with animals. For instance, today I saw this cow feasting on tea leaves at a tea plantation. When I saw that I wondered how the cow might be feeling. Will it be high or caffeine? Will it be able to sleep tonight? After some minutes of observation, I realised that it doesn’t care and the look it gave me clearly said that neither should I.
      Anyhoo, never mind my useless anecdote.
      P.S. Ah, that’s nice of you. Go ahead and use it. Don’t forget to add a caricature 😛

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Weird conversations “we” have with animals?? Mate, you are weird azz haha. Only you have conversations with animals.
        LOL your useless anecdote tho 😂😂😂 it ain’t useless if it cracks me up laughing.

        Liked by 2 people

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