Wal Asr…. By time

Wal Asr…. By time.

tick . tock . tick . tock . tick . tock….
Have you ever seen time passing by? Slowly but surely, as you go through the daily minutiae of your life everyday; fretting, rushing, stretching and pushing.
Have you ever noticed each second slide away, one by one? Drip drip drip, water dripping out of a leaky tap, drop by single drop.
Have you seen it flow? Have you tried to catch it, stop it and hold it close ?
Have to tried to calibrate your rhythm, to walk in tune with time, matching steps together ?
Have your eyes witnessed it? Time, as it slowly passes by. Regularly, relentlessly; in the dead of the night, with the hum of the morning traffic, in the blazing summer heat of a scorching Dubai afternoon.

I have.

45 deg said the car thermostat. Despite the AC on full blast, the angry rays burned my skin through the windshield. Dubai summer is here at last. Fashionably late this year; but arriving with a bang in full blazing glory ;pointy shiny nails and a dazzling gown of yellow and gold …. ‘Dahhlings, i’m heeere, let the party begin’.

The summer heat party is in full swing, as I rush in from one errand and out on the way to another.

Then, I see him.

Spotless white kurta glowing as it reflects the sun-rays. He is walking slowly across the road, with his walking stick…. tap . tap . tap . I know it’s almost time for Zohr Salah because I see him making his way to the masjid, as always. Reliable and dependable, one of the constants in the quiet street I live in.
On this street, it’s not the Adhaan that heralds the arrival of prayer time; but the deliberate, slow and serene footsteps of this peaceful man walking to the masjid. Five times a day, everyday; whatever the season; he makes his way down the road and around the corner . When I see him walk to the mosque, I know I will soon hear the sound of adhaan.

Regular as time , he slowly passes me by.

tick…tick…tick goes the clock
drip…drip… drip goes the leaky tap
tap… tap … tap goes his walking stick guiding this man to the only place that matters – the place where foreheads touch prayer mats in Salah. The place where he connects to his lord.

For no reason at all, something catches in my throat , and I feel my eyes fill up. I finally have the answer to a question that’s been plaguing me since I was very little.
‘What do you want to be when u grow up? ’

“This man…. “; says my heart; “I want to be him.”

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