Monday, April 24

Tribute to a Stranger

I was seated on the plane, waiting for it to take off and crying silent tears. I had just buried my father that very same day. I had thought about changing my ticket, stay with my mom and my sister, and console them. But I had other responsibilities waiting for me in US. Zoya's surgery was scheduled for later that week. I had to leave everyone just hours into mourning and fly back to US.

All of a sudden, the young man seated next to me tapped me on my shoulder and asked in a very gentle voice if I was ok. All I could do was shake my head and cry more. He got up and got me some napkins from the Air Hostess. In between sobs I told him I had just lost my father. He told me how he lost his father when he was very young and told me he knew exactly what I was feeling. He kept me engaged in conversation all the way to Dubai, then asked me if I wanted to join him and walk around the airport. I found out he was going to school in Canada, (I think University of Toronto) studying to be an Actuary. His name was Yaseer.

I was thinking about him sometime last week. We departed in Dubai Airport saying we will meet up at the boarding gate. We were on the same plane to London. I was exhausted from the ordeal of the whole day. I boarded the plane early thinking he will come looking for me and fell asleep. He probably thought I was ignoring him or something. Who knows? But I never got to properly say thanks to him. Yaseer, thank you very much for your kindness that day. I wish you all the best in life and I hope I run into you some day.

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