**”Bismillahir rahmaanir raheem”
-in the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful-**
Nick expected a luxury home inside. One with gorgeous wall frames, long standing vases, designer rugs, expensive lounge suits and coffee tables…
But when he walked into hanzalahs house, he was astonished to find a bare room with bare walls. Infact, it was so bare that there were no lounge suits even.
There were some cushion like things propped up against the wall which nick assumed was meant for sitting.
A vinyl mat was placed on a cloth on the floor where some mugs and plates were laid down.
Nick suddenly felt ashamed of thinking that hanzalah had everything. Hanzalah actually had nothing. He was more poor than anyone nick had ever known.
He felt ashamed of coming to his house and imposing on them when they barely had anything for themselves. And now they had to share their bare minimum with him while he had so much in his home. Well actually, he HAD so much in his home. He now had nothing too.
“Come come!” Hanzalah snapped nick out of his daze. “Sit! I’m just making some breakfast for us. Please make yourself at home!”
Nick found it ironical. Here was a total poor stranger asking him to make himself at home and that he was making breakfast for him when he actually had nothing.
Nick automatically didn’t feel like eating. He couldn’t eat these poor peoples food.
He sat down at the mat where hanzalah gestured him to and promised that he wouldn’t touch a thing or put anything in his mouth. It wouldn’t be fair.
“Everything okay son? Where’s hanzalah? Hasn’t he given you anything as yet? How could he leave you alone?” Abdullah was feeling embarrassed that hanzalah would leave their guest alone..
“Hanzalah! Beta!” He shouted from the living room and hurried to the kitchen. His voice was stern but compassionate at the same time. Nick found himself feeling envious of this too.
Soon after, hanzalah came rushing in with a steaming hot pot which he laid down on the mat.
“I’m really sorry!” Hanzalah apologised over and over again.
“Its cool bro.. I should be apologising. I’m not really hungry anyway. You shouldn’t have worried.” Nick started to say.
“What? No way! You have to eat…” Hanzalah made himself comfortable on the floor and began dishing out some freshly scrambled masala egg in a heap in nicks plate.
“Whoa! That’s more than enough..stop!” Nick said.
“No no! You must be starving.” Hanzalah said as he placed the hot roti on the side of nicks plate and then proceeded to pour the tea into their mugs.
Before nick could say anything, his stomach spoke for him and they both laughed.
“Don’t be shy! Really, just imagine that this is your home” hanzalah tried to make him feel comfortable.
Nick nibbled on a tiny piece of egg. It was so different but divine. But he pushed the thought aside when he looked at the simplicity of the meal before them.
It wasn’t a massive full course breakfast of omelettes, pancakes, fruit, meat and more.
It just consisted of these green looking scrambled eggs, milky tea and flat kind of bread which hanzalah called ‘roti’.
‘I’m sure this was all they have in their kitchen’ nick thought. But as much as he tries not to eat, hanzalah forced him and he didn’t regret eating. He ate to his fill and so did hanzalah, and yet there was still left over.
‘Uhm.. Could I have a serviette please?” Nick asked hanzalah just when he placed the last morsel into his mouth.
“Serviette? Oh.. Err.. We don’t keep any. But come, let me show you where the bathroom is, you can wash your hands” hanzalah replied warmly.
Once they were done in the bathroom, hanzalah showed nick to his room. “You can rest here for a while, I just want to clear up quickly. Can I get you anything?”
“No thanks! I’m fine. Don’t you have a maid to clear up?” Nick asked wondering how hanzalah managed to prepare the breakfast and still clear up.
Hanzalah laughed. “We’re mostly adults here, we don’t keep a domestic, we all just clean up after ourselves so there’s no need for one.”
Hanzalah continued to the lounge where he began clearing up whilst nick sat looking around in hanzalahs room.
Hanzalahs room was just as bare as the front room. No pictures of movie stars or pop stars. No car models or anything of that sort. Just a plain old bare room with a single bed and simple wardrobe.
Eventually nick got comfortable and fell into a deep and comfortable sleep on that same simple, single bed.
Posted by silent living…