Ok, so this is one of our family’s important days; and no, it’s not my wedding night!
Five years ago, it was another big day for our family, where the anticipation built through long years of waiting has come to an end, and the awaited dream has finally come true. My brother who I have never met or spoken to in my life was arriving to Jeddah. The whole family felt we were being filmed as part of a Hollywood production, where the leading star along with his mother is flying all the way from Malaysia, to meet his father, sisters and brothers in Saudi Arabia.
Baba drove a car; my elder brother was in another and my sister and I were with her husband; some sort of parade on its way to pick up our awaited family member from the airport. We stood there watching tons of people exiting the arrival hall, and while trying to identify which one of them he was, I tried to make connections with the only photo I had seen of him, which was when he was seven years old.
“Look, that’s him” someone shouted. I looked, and there he was; a 17 year old young man, who walked out looking more Saudi than his Saudi family. We shared no memory of one another, no childhood, no past, but a future in our hands. Fortunately, when we met, I felt so close to him, like we have never been apart. A delightful reunion became the theme that extended even after he had to leave back to his studies, because, once you make that first hello, a goodbye transforms to a ‘see you later bro’.
I sit here fighting symptoms of flu and hearing our parrot munching his way through his corn stick. I am sitting here, imagining my sister up in the air on a window view seat, pondering what it will be like to meet us, part of her family that she has not seen since 20 years ago. However, thanks to Facebook, we have been keeping each other updated and which surely, led to this thrill I feel, awaiting to finally meet her again.
Today, with sundown, my family and I will head to the airport to pick my sister, who in currently on a plane from the States. I literally couldn’t sleep the night, just thinking of today.