Smoking

I’m often castigated for my zero-tolerance attitude towards smoking. People start quoting Niemöller at me (“First they came for the ‘smokers’ and I said nothing…”) … Read more

A gift

I was given a book called A Gift For Women by my fiance on the day of our Islamic marriage. When thinking of gifts for … Read more

Customs and exercise

It seems that unbeknown to me, my personality has been surreptitiously removed and replaced with an entity called “Bride-to-be”. What bought on this sudden realisation? … Read more

Two princes

As I was getting ready for work this morning, I had a sudden urge to listen to Man in the Mirror by Michael Jackson. I … Read more

All the fair men

As many of you know, I’m getting married soon and am therefore officially “off the market”. A friend recently commented: “It’s great you’ve got a … Read more

What is it good for?

I am dreading another picture of a war-torn land; the one picture that will make me stop and stare, transfixed, letting it darken something inside … Read more

Stem of my belief

On certain occasions, when discussing ethical or particularly controversial issues, I have occasionally thought, “I wonder what Islam says about this,” with the obvious intention … Read more

Immaterial girl

“You have got to be kidding me!” I say to my sister.

She shakes her head. “It’s fine. It’s pretty much average. They’ll be happy with that price.”

I look at the gold necklace, bracelet and earrings laid out in front of me. “But that’s three months’ salary! How can anyone possibly justify spending that much on useless tat?”

She gives me her best ‘Keep-your-voice-down’ look. “It’s not like we’re paying for it,” she says.

“I don’t care who’s paying for it. It’s absolutely ridiculous. I don’t even wear jewellery.”

“It’s tradition,” she tells me. “Whether or not you wear jewellery is immaterial.” I start thinking about pawn shops.

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We’re going through changes

Most of us get jokes and funny pictures sent through to our e-mail account a few times a week. Maybe we’ve laughed or scoffed at something like this, thinking, “Thank God times have moved on.” I know I have. So imagine my horror when I realised that in the run-up to my wedding, I was being trained and instructed in the same way. And whilst my “training” has not been as stringent or backward as the linked picture, it is most certainly based on the same ideology.

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Chic geek

Hi all. Firstly, I just want to apologise for the silence last week. I’ve been crazily busy. Those of you who tuned into the BBC Asian Network interview will know that I’m having to juggle a full-time job (where I’m having to create a web database that does everything but cook you dinner), promoting my first book, writing my second book, salvaging a social life and planning a wedding! It’s enough to make me go all Girl, Interrupted, but I’m managing ok. 

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The classics

Read

  1. Lord of the Flies William Golding
  2. Lolita Vladimir Nabokov
  3. To Kill A Mockingbird Harper Lee
  4. Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen
  5. Brave New World Aldous Huxley
  6. One Hundred Years of Solitude Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  7. Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell
  8. The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald
  9. Dracula Bram Stoker
  10. Frankenstein Mary Shelley
  11. Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte
  12. Catcher in the Rye J.D. Salinger

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