For hundreds of years in Dominican folklore, people have spoken of the legend of ‘La Ciguapa’ – a beautiful woman who can be found roaming through the trees at night. She has dark features, piercing eyes and hair that swings past her waist; the only way you can tell she’s something other than human is by her backwards facing feet. La Ciguapa’s hypnotic beauty usually reels men in before they notice the oddity below her ankles – and then she eats them alive.
I want to start noting stories that deserved more than they received, so here goes. ‘The Afghan Girl’ is one of the more known stories when it comes to exploration of eastern narratives. I always felt a strange connection with this photo – I saw it when I was a teenager and I immediately felt like I could have been her, she could have been me, life is a bizarre lottery.
I am a British Pakistani born in London. Both my mother and father were born in Lahore, Pakistan. I can’t speak my mother tongue and I know little to nothing about my ethnic culture – what can I say? They didn’t bring it with them when they came. As I got older I became curious about who I was, what my parents grandparents were like, how they survived partition, what led them here and who is running through my veins.
“You can’t understand Punjabi?!” Rishma* said, mouth open in a grin stuck on pause that evolved into rolling laughter of disbelief. “No,” I smiled, clenching my fists that lulled by my sides to prevent them from instinctively floating up and punching her in the jaw.
I have suffered with mental health issues for as long as I can remember. Even in primary school, I just found life too overwhelming. What I didn’t consider though was that my diet and lifestyle didn’t help – I bunked every P.E class and I lived on fried chicken, ramen noodles, frozen food and concentrated juices in abundance.
I think it’s pretty safe to say at this stage that hatred of Muslims is brewing into something that can no longer be halted; there’s no other option now – it is going to get worse before it gets better.
Whether it’s a glass of bubbly or a slab of cake, I’m yet to befriend a human who doesn’t have some sort of coping mechanism to get them through this thing called life. One of my vices is the Horror genre – it’s the perfect form of escapism.
So much reading material is available on the formation of Pakistan that it’s hard for someone as clueless as me to decipher what’s true anymore. But there is one tale that seems quite indisputable – that for almost 1000 years different religious groups co-existed here in harmony, as a family, embracing one another’s traditions.
Well hi there! I wrote something about being a proud Pakistani recently, and I wanted to share it here, with you lot. It’s about finding pride in my heritage after a lifetime of self loathing triggered by a society obsessed with being fair skinned and ‘exotic’…
I wrote something recently about the London Bridge terror attacks for MuslimGirl.com, which you can read now.
I won’t expand on it here, but please do have a read and let me know your thoughts on it. And in light of it, I’d like to share some of my favourite quotes on my hometown – and in my opinion, the greatest city on earth. Go ahead, @ me bruh.