Destination Gauntanamo Bay

Abdullah 1 

I want to surprise Sadia and the kids with a holiday to London. We’ve been invited Rahim’s wedding and we can stay on longer and show the kids around. With all the Islamophobia issues I’ve been reading about, the idea of London was a bit unsettling but Rahim and I have been friends for ages. 

Sadia is the love of my life and I thank the almighty for sending her to me every time I pray. My parents adore her and when we fight they always take her side. My mum always said that Sadia is her amaanat (trust given by almighty), which is why, even when we were studying my mum would move haven an earth to make life easier for Sadia. There’s none of the evil mother in law , suffering daughter in law dynamics in our home and I usually laugh when I hear about those and give thanks that they are not my issues. All praise is due to the almighty for blessing me with a companion I not only love but am also totally in love with.

I’ve consistently made special duas (prayers) that Rahim would find a spouse who would make him as happy as Sadia makes me. I can’t really explain it, safe to say that she is truly amazing. She juggles work and our kids with expertise and ensures the kids  are brought up in an Islamic home with good morals. 

Rahim and I became friends at madressa. I was becoming a hafiez (memorising the quraan by heart) and since I was an only child Rahim became my brother. A few months back he had called to tell me that his parents had suggested he meet this woman they knew and the moment he walked into the house he knew she was the one. I laughed because he told me when he seen her she was in nikaab. Playfully I told him he made up his mind before he even could see her.

Zarina came from a family that had a strong Islamic ethos and her father was the Imam of the local masjid. I had always been interested in learning more about the experiences of Muslim minorities in western countries and after I was introduced to him via e-mail , I had even contacted him and  asked him some questions about the challenges to being Muslim in the UK. He was engaging and interesting and I was really happy Rahim was marrying his daughter

During one of our chats he told me that the local hospital was looking to hire doctors. I had previously considered relocating to London for a few years so I contacted the hospital and did an interview via Skype. They agreed to meet me whenever I was in London arrive and said that they had a job for Sadia as well. I didn’t know how to tell Sadia about this, I knew she would never leave her parents, or mine. I kept delaying reading my Istigarah salah despite knowing the almighty had all the answers.

Eventually I booked our tickets and decided to surprise my family with the trip. Nadia would be thrilled, she has been hinting about visiting London long before the news of Rahim’s wedding. I was a bit nervous since I had heard these stories about the increase in Islamophobia. This was part of the reason I was hesitant to tell Sadia about the job offer. Sadia would read the newspapers and often comment about how lucky we were to be in South Africa , a place where we could practice our religion freely.

by mumtaz saley


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