Blogs

To Hang Until Death 150 150 ComfortAid International

To Hang Until Death

Abdul Kareem Lalji is a big, towering personality; you can spot him from quite a distance. This largeness to his body size extends to his demeanor; cordial and likable, ready to listen to everybody with a ready, albeit wry smile. The man has been through a lot of trials and tribulations for a 43-year-old, 5…

India Calling 150 150 ComfortAid International

India Calling

Will missiles put rotis in our mouths? When my travels take me to Mumbai, India, which is often, I am royalty material. My encounter with immigration and customs is pleasant, courteous, brief. Being Platinum with The Leela, their driver picks me up in an airconditioned BMW and I am whisked up to my super-cooled room without…

Land Of The Imams (a) – A Deja-Vu 150 150 ComfortAid International

Land Of The Imams (a) – A Deja-Vu

Lucky Sohail and I are in the land of the Imams (a) once more, but this time, during the blessed birthdays of Shaban 3 and 4. Oh, what a soopa treat! Emirates Airline’s stepsister, flydubai, with matching step-sisterly service and attitude, flies us down to Najaf, where we arrive 30 minutes late, with my ears…

Has The Imam (a) Reappeared? – A Nightmare Above 41,000 Feet 150 150 ComfortAid International

Has The Imam (a) Reappeared? – A Nightmare Above 41,000 Feet

I’m on my way to Kabul, Afghanistan. Again. My 38th time to this traumatized country in the past 12 years or so CAI has been active here. The diverse challenges the Trustees of CAI face in managing the various humanitarian projects in this badbakht country is unrelenting and never cease. Most disconcerting is the safety…

CAI Newsletter – March 2019 – B 150 150 ComfortAid International

CAI Newsletter – March 2019 – B

Ramadhan 2019 – Appeal For Iftaar Aid The holy month of Ramadhan, when we share our bounties with those who don’t have enough to eat, is less than a few weeks away; CAI has begun preparing the logistics of purchase and distribution of food grains. Alhamd’Allah, this will be CAI’s 23rd year of Iftaar distribution…

India – Home Away From Home? / A Human Face In NZ 150 150 ComfortAid International

India – Home Away From Home? / A Human Face In NZ

India – Home Away From Home? India is my second home; I spend a lot of time here. I’ve been visiting this mahaan country, off and on, since 1980. I even lived here for 3 years, from 2008 through 2011. I have a love/hate relationship with her. I guess it’s like being with a spouse…

A Startling Call To Prayer / Happy Birthday To Me 150 150 ComfortAid International

A Startling Call To Prayer / Happy Birthday To Me

A Startling Call To Prayer Murtaza Bhimani and I are driving to Kolda, Senegal to inspect a CAI school that was constructed here for the poor community a couple of years ago. Also, CAI is contemplating another small school in another village 4 hours along the way for the children deprived the opportunity of a…

Reminding Me Of Zainab / A Generation Ruined – Dreading The Future 150 150 ComfortAid International

Reminding Me Of Zainab / A Generation Ruined – Dreading The Future

Reminding Me Of Zainab: I am bleary eyed and woozy headed, seated on an Emirates Airline flight waiting to be flown to Mumbai after completing the seemingly non-ending 15 hours flight from Orlando to Dubai, with an added 3 hours transit wait. So, you will appreciate I am not in the best of moods. Especially…

Pain & Gain – Wheels That Heal 150 150 ComfortAid International

Pain & Gain – Wheels That Heal

CAI has built and operates 6 medical clinics in the remotest lands in Allah’s creation – the treacherous mountain terrain of Afghanistan. These distant lands are home to perhaps the poorest and disadvantaged people on earth. Most of the 300 sick people who are treated in these clinics daily, for free, have never seen a…

Seeing Without Eyes – Mohammedhadi Somji 150 150 ComfortAid International

Seeing Without Eyes – Mohammedhadi Somji

I have observed Mohammedhadi Somji, a distant relative of mine, for a few years. I have seen him attending lectures at HIC with an aid of an along-white cane, sitting cross-legged through lectures and ignored by his peers, leaving for home with his parents. He intrigued me. Although I greeted and kidded around with him,…

Of Butt Cleavages And Tattoo Generation 150 150 ComfortAid International

Of Butt Cleavages And Tattoo Generation

Hameesi, Mullah Mchungu’s grinning native Tanzanian caretaker, lets me into the sparse apartment in the ancient and drab building that is Mullah’s home since he was born in Dar es Salaam eons ago. He points, still grinning, to the still form of his boss, relaxing in an antique hammock type seat that I used to…

My Tears Of Blood – Asma’s Story 150 150 ComfortAid International

My Tears Of Blood – Asma’s Story

My Tears Of Blood – Asma’s Story I have been associated with Burma’s Rohingya minority since 2012, when the initial massacre by the country’s army sent refugees teeming into Bangladesh for succor. Then, CAI donors assisted with food and tents sent to the victims at the camps set up by UNHCR. I was also able…

Hopping Through Dar / Tanga / Pemba / Zanzibar 150 150 ComfortAid International

Hopping Through Dar / Tanga / Pemba / Zanzibar

Hopping Through Dar / Tanga / Pemba / Zanzibar Emirates flight EK725 from Dubai lands Dar es Salaam 5 minutes ahead of schedule, the American pilot tells us it’s because he helped push the aircraft…haha. He has been joking since takeoff, telling us that he wears his seatbelts all the time because he is scared…

Land Of My Imams / I Am So Upset, So Mad 150 150 ComfortAid International

Land Of My Imams / I Am So Upset, So Mad

Land Of My Imams / I Am So Upset, So Mad FlyDubai is a terrible airline. It has modern aircrafts and all, but an unfriendly crew and lousy service. It is as if they know they play the second fiddle to their cousins at Emirates and the resentment shows. Flying economy, nothing is free. Since…

My Name Is Salman Khan! 150 150 ComfortAid International

My Name Is Salman Khan!

My Name Is Salman Khan! So brags Salman, a circa nine-year-old I encounter the day before yesterday, walking the short distance from the Leela Hotel, a stone’s throw from Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport. It simply used to be called Bombay International Airport during saner, more cheerful times. Although the Leela is a piece…

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