Aug 11, 2013


By Alawiya Abdalla

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Have you ever sat down and write down your families names on a piece of paper? and have you ever put a tick next to it to see who you have visited lately?

Have you ever witnessed petty fights between families that run and run for years and years? If the answer is yes to all of these questions then all I have to say is, remember. Remember this Hadith, and look into your heart to find forgiveness

“Rahm (family ties) is a word derived from Ar-Rahman (The Compassionate One) And Allah says: ‘I shall keep connection with him who maintains you and sever connection with him who severs you” [Bukhari]

This story is about Kinship and the importance of it. This story is about two brothers who find themselves in each other’s lives in an unusual events. One of the brothers cut ties with the other one without even explaining his reasons. The one who was left behind tried his best to reach out for his brother, but to no avail. In the end he just gave up….

They will be FORCED to get back together as a family again. But is any of them willing to fully forgive the other? And did all these years apart mean that they will never have something in common again?

Let us explore the story of Mohamed, Khalifa and their families to see where it all went wrong.

Mohamed is the first born to Aysha and Ahmed, and then Khalifa followed two years later.

Mohamed was light skinned but not particularly text book handsome, in fact he was average looking but not ugly. Khalifa was the same in terms of not being overly handsome, but he was dark skinned. As in so many countries but particularly in Barawa, being light skinned means you get all the attention. You are classified as handsome or beautiful AUTOMATICALLY.

If you are a guy, then you are Atore (movie star handsome). If you are a girl you will be called Atiriche (Beauty queen), you will get proposals so easily just because you are light skinned. Unfortunately it is true till this day, and it creates such jealousy amongst siblings. In this case did the jealousy just stop at being just that or does it grow into hatred that has shapes Khalifa’s character into what he is today?

Fast forward to Egypt on a sunny day


It is sooo hot today and I cannot stand myself let alone anyone! Seriously you would think that we could afford an air conditioner, with the amount of money we have. 

Nooooo, my dad likes to “save”, I mean seriously we live in this really posh area and we are the only people who do not own an air conditioner!! Arrghhh.

I am all for “save for a rainy day and all that” but this is too much. My dad’s way of living completely changed after the Civil war in Somalia broke out. He instantly went from care free and “buy whatever you want kids” to “TURN THE LIGHTS OFF” or “This bread is too expensive buy from the street corner instead”

Yep, life was tight and there is nothing we can do about it. My dad went from being a foreign minister to virtually no one, and I could see how hard it has been for him. All he does is go to the embassy to drink tea with the staff, they have nothing to do.

But I am still a teenager and I WANT AN AIR CONDITIONER!! And to make matters worse, my brother Mohamed is walking around the house topless when he knows that the Somali neighbours next door are watching. He is such a show off!!! At every opportunity he would be there showing off to whoever is watching. I have had enough of this to be honest, I mean at first it was a little annoying but now I absolutely CANNOT stand him. Whenever we go back home to Somalia for the holidays, our relatives would ask where he was or what he was doing. They would not even bat an eyelid if I was there!!

“Where is the Atore?”, they would ask.
“Mashallah, have you seen how handsome this guy is”, they would say in awe.

At first I could not understand why was he getting all the attention and I was not  because I was young and I could not care less about these things. However, as I grew older I figured out that it had something to do with the skin colour.Resentment towards my brother slowly started building up. And to make matters worse, Mohamed acts all nice and stuff towards me.
I do not want his pity love!! It was as if he is doing it to show off even more. I mean whenever I dismiss him, my mum always tells me off!
“Your brother is being nice to you, why don’t you try and act kindly towards him” She would ask angrily.
Nobody understands!!! I just want him out of my life and AWAY FROM ME.

BUT, recently something is making me smile :D to be precise, SOMEONE is making me have a big smile on my face.
Her name is Sara, and she just moved in next door. She is the most beautiful girl I have ever seen in my whole life, and she has the most beautiful smile I have ever seen. She is Egyptian and she goes to the girls school that is next to our language school. I get to see her every time, while we wait for our dad to pick us up.
Today I have decided that I am going to go up to her, and introduce myself to her. Of course, I would start with saying that I am her neighbour and that if she needs anything, she can always come to me as she is new to the area :D

I start walking towards her, when SOMEONE catches up to me.
“Khalifa wait up” Says Mohamed running towards me.
“Ufff what do you want. Go wait for our dad over at the gate!!” I tell him furiously.
“I bought you our favourite pop corn from Rabb3a’s place” He tells me with an annoying smile.
“Just go away will you?” I warn him.
“YOU ARE GOING TO TALK TO A GIRL RIGHT? RIGHT?” He starts shouting from figuring out what I was up to.
“Shush, uff. No!” I reply and getting agitated by the minute.
“Come on, tell your big brother who it is?” He says in a lowered voice and looking towards the girl’s school.
“NO ONE!! Why don’t you eat ALL the pop corn yourself?”, I suggest.
“Are you sure?, because I will” He replies while scoffing his pop corn to get to my one quickly.
“Yeah yeah, whatever” I tell him, and looking towards Sara who is like in front of us waiting for her dad to pick her up.
“Hey ishinntt da giw who wivs neph to ush”, mumbles Mohamed as he attempts to eat the whole pop corn all at once.

And at this point Sara turns around to look who’s talking like that!! When she sees Mohamed’s mouth all filled with pop corn, she starts laughing politely.

“Excuse my dumb brother” I tell her to explain the situation.
“That’s alright, I can see how much he loves pop corn” She replies smiling.
“Sorry about that, but this pop corn IS THE BEST AROUND. The name is Mohamed by the way and we are your neighbours”, he says after finishing swallowing the pop corn.
“Sara”, she introduces herself.
“This is my little brother Khalifa”, he introduces me even though I wanted to do it myself. Thank you very much!!
“Sorry guys, this may seem rude. But I don’t want a bad reputation, so if you don’t mind” She reminds us about the culture regarding girls and boys talking.
“Oh sorry, we will move. But before I leave I wanna give you this extra pop corn because I have some in my teeth”, says Mohamed cheekily.
“OKAAAY!! not feeling hungry after you mentioned teeth but thanks anyway” She replies laughing politely.

So we leave her by herself, and I cannot believe that MY BROTHER interfered once again in my life like that!! and to make matters worse they seem to give each other looks that shows that they like each other!

I hate him, I hate him I hate him I hate him I HATE HIIIIMMMMMM!

That was 20 years ago, from that day I vowed that I would be better than my brother in every way. If I do not have looks, then I am going to make enough money to buy me respect and make people notice me. And here I am in London surrounded by my shops at every corner, with my wife who is so proud that she married the famous Khalifa owner of the happy sweet corn chains. I also have an 18 year old son named Osman, and my mum lives with me after my dad passed away. Life could not be better for me, and as for my brother, he got what he deserved. He lives in Egypt with his wife Sara, and daughter Shaimaa and son Amr in a really poor area with the lowest wage possible.

That makes up for all the years that I was cast aside somehow bearable. I cut all ties with him, as he is not up to my standards now and I like it this way………

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)


As-salam alaykum,
I was really looking forward to Ahmed's story. I thought you would finish the story of the AbdAllah's first.
Not that this doesn't look like it would be a really lovely story, just wanted to let you know that there might just be some people waiting for his story.

Yup, just as twotees, I was waiting for Ahmed's story too :(

Jazak Allah khair
I was waiting for this one.

I was waiting for ahmeds story too.i hope its ahmeds

Seems like nice story.......but i guess we all were waiting for Ahmed's story......I wish u could start that.....

asslamu alaikum
dear sis i am toowaiting for ahmed's story!!anyways this too promises to be a nice one in sha Allah :)

I really wanted to know who Ahmed would get with! The mysterious facebook girl? Or maybe someone else? I love his character and personality! <3<3<3

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