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The Evening Walk

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Music sets me on fire while I walk. I long for nothing but some time with myself. Alone. On the streets of the town. Under the trees with no one in sight. In the beauty of the darkness and silence. All I sense is thoughts and emotions. Happiness. Sadness. Helplessness. Nothingness. Aloneness. I see white and pink flowers in the street light. I feel their smell. Summer just started, but I thought flowers blossom in the Spring. Or maybe it is different in this country. But I like it anyways. I feel good.

But who am I? How did I end up in this town? Why walk in the dark? Why not do something else? Like go and sit in a coffee shop and read a book or write, and drink a cup of coffee. No, I should stop because I won’t be able to sleep. I have to wake up early tomorrow. And I just came home from the shop. I thought I should go for a walk.

Why am I afraid? What is fear? Why I can not rid of it. I do not know. I think I understand it but can not completely control it. It disappears and reappears like the hair on my face. I have to cut it if I don’t want it. Most of life has been like this. Can I be a great writer? Maybe, if I work hard. I think I can be. Think about where I started. It is possible, but I need to work hard and read a lot. No one can be a writer without writing. Everyone goes through the pain. All human beings have the potential to write, and so have I. Even if I can’t be a great writer, I am going to fucking keep writing. I just need to.

What will happen after Ph.D.? Will I get a full-time job as a professor? Will I be able to afford to live in a decent house? My room is not too bad, but a better place would be beautiful. Thank God I am not on the street because I could be if I do not work hard. Life is hard, man. Oh no! I am going to die too one day. What do I want to do before death? I want to write at least one book about my life. My village, the mountains, school and childhood friends. And my mother.

That house is so big and beautiful. Look at the cat in the window. How can these people afford such big homes? I heard they have to pay thousands of dollars in taxes. My yearly earnings are barely enough to pay rent and buy food. These thoughts about death, health and rent are scary. I should think about something sweet. Yeah, I should. But, why some people have excellent jobs and others, equally talented people, have to struggle. When, mostly, it is just a difference between nineteen and twenty, as people back home aptly put.

Life is fucking cruel and unfair. Some people have riches just because they have them. Others don’t have them just because they don’t. They are fucking miserable and all they get is more misery. Yes, I understand hard work pays, but for some, it doesn’t, no matter what. But do I care about riches? Do I want to be rich? I do not think so. I just want to have enough to live a decent life. I don’t want to end up on the street or die of a disease because I can’t afford a doctor. This is so scary.

It is going to be OK. Think about something beautiful and positive. I am calm, kind, confident and fearless, although fear is fucking existential. I listen to people. I try to understand where they come from. I always think about increasing my knowledge of the world. I read a lot. Sometimes, I read three to four different books on the same day. It is never enough though. But it is good. It makes me stronger but kinder. All I need is a calm head full of ideas.

I think this walk is enough and I should return home to take a shower and eat. Which book should I read tonight though? Sapiens by Hariri or reread Justice by Sandel? I think I should continue with Hariri. His story of the empires is interesting.

I am home from the thirty minutes’ walk. This is what I recall from the many random thoughts.

Aslam Kakar


  1. Munir Ahmad Kakar says:

    I am really impressed at the intellectual pace you are in the process of gaining. You have undoubtedly taken great strides and you will surely achieve what you have in mind. My confidence stems from the fact of your humble beginning and the upward trajectory you are on now. Your journey from Margha zakaryazai primary school to Rutgers university is incredible. You are determined to continue to know and grasp the world: good luck with this wonderful enterprise. This is curiosity at its best. These thoughts and fears are integral to existence. Today in early morning walk dozens of thought crossed my mind and also grappled with some bitter memories. But then I got myself engaged in the beauty of nature, the cool morning breeze, the hard steep rocks of Mardar mountain and the green plant which we call LAGHUNI majestically growing within the rock.I would like to suggest to read if you have not already read a book titled THE POWER OF NOW By Eckhart Tolle though i found it a bit annoying to come to term with his spiritual leanings. I know you are missing your near and dear ones but as we used to say in economics: there is no such thing as free lunch. I have been through such tribulations. To be honest with you the environment we are living in is oppressive which demands a bit of adjustment. Hope you are enjoying your preoccupation and your life. Wishing you crossing many a milestones of successes towards a bright future.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aslam Kakar says:

      Lala, Thank you so much for the appreciaton and kind thoughts. You have always been so supportive. Frankly, you are one of the people who inspired me from an early age to aim to pursue higher education. I am well and life is good. I hope you are well too.



    • Aslam Kakar says:

      Also, thanks for the book suggestion. I will check it out.


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