Eliciting the dreams of an Afghan refugee


His name is Mustafa and he’s turning 30 soon, well I didn’t wonder how old is he neither when I was checking-in three days ago at this not-so-bad hostel that in order to spot you have to ask foreigners not locals as it’s in the backpackers street of Penang ….. a lovely city where the buildings could tell how magnificent was it for Chinese old people to build a Fangzi here but the history narrates how proudly Sir Francis Light walked down this ground. Chulia street -Penang- Malaysia- Planet Earth-  3rd to the sun in the Solar System- The milky way. Mustafa  who didn’t know what’s the milky way – without an education and with his English that he practise everyday with both his guests and colleagues – would think that in a city in Europe where the wonders happen there’s a way that is milky. He was there standing as an owl hunting fat rats …. us the backpackers 🙂 he was the host – he  said it with pride but he lied.

Me – Hello ! tired of being stuck like a sardine in this Van for nearly 4 hours.

Mustafa  – Hello ! Welcome ! Passport or identity card please

Me – I’m not a rapist but yeah here is it.

Mustafa – One dorm one night 25 ( Malaysian) Ring-ing-gits

Not the guy to haggle with over the price, I paid and got my locker’s key and went upstairs

Mustafa – Have dorm, have a fan, toilet, hot water, A-C no ! ( it was as fast as Eminem singing the last verse of Mockingbird )

Me – Vego Vego Vego Vego.

I got the keys and thanked him Malaysia is hot and the only reason I know is that this part of Asia is hot and humid and because you can’t wander topless because you simply can’t. I didn’t take a shower I just went on a bike tour. A pedal bike that won’t cost more than 3$ a day.

I did almost all the touristic attractions. I fell in love with the city and all I wanted was to go back to the hostel and write about what I’ve found.

At the entrance were Mustafa and his fellows an Indian young boy and a Malay man around the big table and a white lady boy talking to a Chileno and a Chilena young lady. Took the shower, I dressed in my Lungi and went back and went out to write. As there were 6 chairs and 6 people + me. The Malay guy gave me his and said he’s going to shop from the grocery.

Mustafa: Penang good ?

Me: It is

I thought of Sir Francis Light and his cruises. I thought of mom, the old man whom I met at the restaurant and haggled with over the price of the hippie outfit. I felt guilty doing so because couple of months ago I was tipping in fancy restaurants. The pen broke so I turned back to him.

Me: Tell me about the war. Mustafa is your name right ?

Mustafa: The war is hard. You people travel.. you think it’s hard life. No try the war !!

Me: So true !

Mustafa: My father, mother, brother died in the war in Afghanistan. I’m from Ghazni … Hein … dangerous city .. be careful !

Me: I’m sorry

Mustafa: Oh it’s okay ! You are Arab …. right??

Me: No.. I’m a Berber .. Be careful

Mustafa: Sorry, I don’t like Arabs.

Me: You’re a good man Mustafa but why don’t you ?

Mustafa: I am refugee Ok?

Me: Okay

Mustafa: I came here to work and live peace but in this job you don’t want to have Arabs.

Me: I heard they tip well….. They spend too much money

Mustafa: Ah the money. They steal money. Ask me I know … Algeria, Morocco, Libya No, Egypsha Oh My God !!!

Me: I lived in some of these places Mustafa and I know there are both the good and bad people.

Mustafa: You are Muslim right?

Me: Yes Alhamdoulillah

Mustafa: Sex is haram right ? ( smiling )

Me: Hmmmmm Depends ( smiling )

Mustafa: Theft is haram too. Why Arabs steal ?

For a moment I thought of explaining to him that Arabs can be Christians, jews and irreligious but I assumed such a talk would ruin the night. So I nodded.

His Indian friend: Remember the Egyptian who stole the laptop. His name ?

Mustafa: Hahahaha yes the Egypshen !

Me: hahahaha Egyptian ( being dumb )

Mustafa: Anywayzzzzzz

Me: Mustafa, what if your wife asks you to go live in Ghazni. Will you go for it ?

Mustafa:Wife don’t know maaaaAaaaan ! ( His friend laughed ) My wife don’t ask questions. My wife answer……… Be careful !

Me: I’m seriously trying to be careful actually.

Mustafa: now girls are stupid… facebook, telephone love love love and in life.. real life no love.

Me: This is the sound of wisdom !!

Mustafa: Hein ?

Me: What’s your dream….. Mustafa ?

Mustafa turned back to his friend who was inches behind him and said something in a language they both know but I don’t. Something that I translated into: This is a silly boy and I deemed the post-comment grin an indecent suspicion.

Mustafa: Good house, Good country, Good job, Children. ( He lowered his voice as he noticed the guys at the other table stared.

Me: Hmmmmm you’re not demanding. Find one of the foreigners who come over and marry her.

Mustafa: hahahahaha hostel maaAaan ( Whispering ) budget people here and when they know  I’m Afghani, they freak out.

Me: Afghanistan is a good country. You guys have Cannabis and nature.I would marry an Afghan woman if you find me one…….  well I’m a Berber you know ….. Be careful !!

Mustafa: Afghani women good, they pray, they fast. Afghan woman you are  lucky !

Me: I just want to be happy. The passport doesn’t matter.

Mustafa: The problems Afghani women don’t have dreams. I want a woman with dreams and professional.

Me:Professional !?!

Mustafa: Travellers know life. Afghani women for example no.

Me: Yes….. true ! (serious )

Mustafa: Ok ! I have to go… night shift is long.

Me: So no dreams for you tonight

Mustafa: Peace and Love

I thought what answer was that. but as I remember the way he smiled when he said it. I thought of all the neo-hippies who use these words to use people.

Mustafa is still there….. He added me on Facebook and sent me a message in which he wrote on Sunday 7:07pm:

– Hello bro how are you
-You can call me ***** cuz my name is *****, so in Facebook cuz some people disturb me I changed my name.

Instead of writing back I thought of writing about him…… The poor 😦

AT THE CAFE – explicit content


Settings :

Where: A tiny coffee shop not far from my pad

When: Four hours ago ( 22:00 Bangkok time )


Me : unable to get couple of things done at home so I headed to a cafe.

The waiter: a thirtish guy with badly dyed-blond hair who poked his wife as I get into the coffee shop.

His wife: A fat cat that seem to be as useless as a bad quote.


Me- Sawadee ….. an Espresso please !

Waiter- Something that should mean I don’t understand

Me- Cafe / Italia / Roma / Milano / Cafe / Cafe

Waiter- Ahh Ok  Ok Ok 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

His Wife- Hahahahahah laughing like an ugly geisha.

Waiter- Where you come from ?

Me- Heiiiiiin ?

Waiter- What’s your name ?

Me- Aw yeah ! My name’s Gulliver and I’m from Brodbingnag

Waiter- Nice to meet you

Me- Are you sure ( I whispered ) faking a smile


Me- Internet WI-FI password

Waiter- GOD + his phone number

Me- That’s a good name for a network !! What’s your name ?

Waiter- Game

Me- Smile, the coffee was good

Waiter- Lady? ( In other words: I can find you a sexy girl ) nudging his wife’s elbow

Me- Thank you, I’m married ( I lied ) showing him the ring I wear in my indecent finger.

Waiter- Ok Ok Ok … Thai lady you ? ( He wanted to know is my girl-friend Thai)

Me-  No. She’s from Wonderland and her name is Alice and she’s way better than the shit you have.

His wife- Hmmmmm and she said something in their language that must be too funny that he could neither hold back the laugh nor hide his filthy teeth.

(( Bored, Tired of his frequent questions, his bitch’s stares and pissed as I couldn’t start what I came for ))


Me- Does this cunt play dominoes ?

Waiter- Heiiin ? ( He didn’t understand )

Me- I believe jerking off is way better than having such a company.

Waiter- English No No No

Me- Ok Ok Ok. If you have a dollar and you have to give it away. Will you give it to the hungry kid, the homeless man or to the woman in the wheelchair ?

Waiter- The midget is getting nervous as he started fast-talking.

His wife- went out for a cigarette.

Me- (Mumbling La dance de Zorba in a provoking croon as I was getting ready to pay and leave )…… You know if I were you I’d give half a dollar to the woman in the wheelchair, half a dollar to the hungry kid and gift your nasty wife to the homeless fella.

Waiter- Thank you …. Good night

Me- Good night ……. nudging him the way he poked his wife as I came in.

I will — On sufism


I decided that tomorrow

I will be strong

I will truly feel it

And by the will of the avenger

My ego will smolder

I won’t fed, I won’t tire

I’m no longer the old me

That I’ve quit

So in the lake of must

I will fancy falling

And along the road of hardship

I will be tracing joy

At the peak of Moksha

I will both dazzle and enlighten

And I will call you

Dear lord

And I will thank you

As l grow radiant more and more

I will smile, I’ll be shining

I will be the core

A very short ‘n’ silly double-plotted story by the dean of silliness.

He loved her for being easily satisfied, for being awesome, caring, tender, real ……. for being unrivaled. But as the time passed by this non demanding character turned into a burden that he shoulders every night when they visit their secret garden and every morning when she plays ” buy me a rose – Kenny Rogers”. So he decided to travel to make cash … to make her “happy” .

It was a foggy Sunday when she was crying next door begging him to stay, promising tomorrow is going to be bright and re-suggesting for the thousandth time that she gets a job to help. None of these did. He gripped the old suitcase that used to be his son’s cradle as he was turning to leave when his kiddie shouted ” Dad, I can deal with a poor, luxury-free childhood but I will never handle a fatherless past. He ran to his kid, hugged him tight, cried behind his back as a father is a hero and a hero doesn’t shed tears, sniffed him desiring the sacred smell of home……….. The couple made love and the kid slept happily. A happiness that started fading from the very next day as whenever things went wrong, she – whom he loved and still – reminds him that he was ready and willing to leave them ……. And he finally did as the freight gets heavier and heavier …. too much on the lil pony.



Drunk and still thinking of you

Too lonely to go sin

But though dump, deaf and blind

I can see and hear you saying

I’ve spent your age ferreting

Please don’t …….. Go !!

Now as I spot you 

I remembered the prayers during the nights 

Naked… weak…. stoned

To the might, the all-knowing

To your God 

That I revenge …

That I stop you

I hated myself … I hate you

I hate The fact

That we became one

That I’m soothed… I live in you

Exhausted but willing to run

To race the cheetah and cheat

To even murder … to culprit

To wrongdo

Just to lay next to you

Now, here

And as I fake a smile

And as I’m hiding the tears

I wish these letters

When merged, squeezed, thrown and brewed

My lay way

Then lost and found in a mess

In a shy stack of hay

Could tell how much I love you

                                          ***Knitted, muffled and mailed to the Syreni of the North Atlantic.

A quick chat with a King


We all have that little ” Hasan, Luigi, Tom, Julien, Miguel, Hongqi …..etc” in our neighborhoods. I’m talking about that kid who occupies the corner you may stop by for a couple of seconds to tie your shoelaces during your daily outing. He would sit for hours trying all the marketing tips he’s learned over the time at ” the University of Seasons and Seasons on the ground ”  to sell you  chewing gums,a nail clipper, a keychain or just a pack of tissues that could give the vividest denotation of heat, cold, loneliness, war, peace and fear, that was and still the most willing accomplice when sinning and the most placating solace when bewailing. A pack of tissues that comprehends that none of the mentioned tips could make this long-awaited detachment from his “Roi ” as soon as begging would.

The king supplicated !!!!!

In a planet where a porn star has millions of fans on social media and tons of food are wasted rather than donated ……. A real king is likely to beg. Actually he’s good at it, he even considers it a life-skill which endures just like riding a bicycle or pitching a tent appropriately and as there was a need for a first time to gain this skill, I was wondering when was the King’s premiere and here was the answer.

I begged him once to have a bite

Of his sandwich

 I begged her mom so we hang out 

She was a bitch

I begged their sister for love the sacred 

I was mortified…. I developed hatred

He knew I was amazed by the way he speaks.

He knew I underestimated him.

He knew I thought he’s unlettered.. so he added.

I am the King and I’m lucky

The best poet is a friend

And he enlightened me

The victims of genius are clients

And they taught me

It’s by the painter and his beloved

I was worshiped 

And by the monk and his God 

I was venerated

It was a struggle, a hardship I should admit

A fight to which I was challenged

But with Neptune and Uranus 

I was blessed

As when a cop scolded

There was a hippie to cheer up

And when an ugly disgusted

There was a cute to joy me up

I didn’t say Adios as I went. The king is easy to find

I just winked, smiled, hand-slauted him and wished I could be a king for a while


ON SUFISM ————- feeling thankful

sufi festival calligraphy art 

OH ALLAH !!!!!











I’m loath to admit that I’m sorry for you dad. I’m sorry that I couldn’t be the doctor or the judge you always pictured me. I won’t be able to send you the driver, to book you a suite. I myself go to hostels and will probably start couch surfing 🙂 . I’d say sorry to the girl who may one day decide to spend the rest of her life with me. I don’t think you’ll ever be in your own house, where you go water the flowers and plant a tree that you will repeatedly talk about to our grandchildren. Opposite, we’re likely to wake up with a pissed landlord knocking on the door cursing the day he rented out his/her property that won’t be large enough to run after you from a room to another……….. I’m just a teacher …. I know it’s hard for you to understand what’s really amazing in this position to make someone so proud that he wakes up everyday with a grin to meet’em sweet devils to teach them something to both give them a hard time and be driven bananas every once in awhile. Here’s what happened couple of minutes ago. I hope it will give a better explanation of why I would never plan to quit this job any soon.

I just got a message from a student that I’ve been teaching in the past. The guy got married and he recently had a baby that he called Khaled (my name). Here’s a humble translation of his message that would make the shittiest day of the unluckiest cabbie ever !!!!

Dear teacher,, I don’t know where you are now. You know I miss you so much and I love you like a big brother though you’re younger than me. I wished you could stay with us longer. Do you remember ********** telling you that we should find you a woman here so you marry her and live amidst us. Anyway I hope you are happy and successful. Last week I was so busy I couldn’t write to tell you that I became a father .. Yeaaaaah I have a son that I attached his photo to the mail. You know what ??? His name is Khaled. For couple of months I and my wife were debating on the name we would select. I’m not sure if I will be a good father but I wish he will be a great man like you. 

Teacher I love you soooo much 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 

***** In the part of the world where I am actually they would call a man who cries a naive. I’m happy and proud of being that idiot

— I once have wished —

I once have wished 

There was a planet 

where I plus you equals you


I once have wished 

That at night as in the morning 

the sun shone

So I can surf those wrinkles 

Slide along your lips 

Drift, bounce, fall and shift 

And proudly announce

I located beauty 

I once have wished 

I could chaperone you

So I voetsak

Out of the land of Right

And shoo the guilt away


I once have wished 

Death was a party 

And Azrael was a welcomed advena

So I recommend his comradeship 

So I smile as we parted

Will you call it ……. ? I won’t !!


And now I wonder

How could I make it 

All those years without you

Will you call it a triumph

I won’t !!

Wasn’t it witless to waive a reality

To a  mirage

To forgo a villa to a gunyah

Will you call it a smart deal

I won’t !!

She said ………….

Why do we have to be

Knee-deep, Chest-deep then neck-deep in mud

To sink, to drown, to die reaching the shore

Will you call it a choice 

I won’t !!