Anwar Diab, November 1926 - March 24, 2013

On March 19, 2013, my sister and I had both woken up uncomfortably, talking about a strange dream each of us had. Only to discover, we both had the same dream! A dream that became reality 5 days later. 6 years ago today, I remember returning home ecstatic I had done well on my Maths Final. Mama was in the kitchen looking all pretty, arranging the flowers she got from Mother’s Day three days before. Sheikh el M7shi (Kousa b Laban) was on the stove, filling the air with the mouth watering scent of cooked yoghurt. Then, a phone call from my aunt in Damascus saying Jiddo had tripped and fell in the garden again and had fainted. Her voice frantic. Something was off. A few minutes later... screams of despair. He hadn’t even been in the garden. Jiddo had woken for the morning prayer, which he always did on the chair facing the window that overlooked the Loquat tree. He had a bowl of his favourite, rice & milk, and was about to have breakfast when suddenly, he passed away.
I hadn’t seen him for 2 years since the war began in 2011. Never got the chance to visit again, kneel by his grave, wetting the soil with the tears that would certainly stream down my face. It’s incredible how much some humans remain permanently engraved in your heart and memory. I miss your bony, yet incredibly strong arms that gripped me tight in a hug every summer & winter you saw me again. Your kisses that made me laugh hysterically as your spiky white beard tickled my face and neck. I miss seeing you read the newspaper in your office & helping you in the garden, watering the jasmine bushes that grew with love, the lavender, the lemon, cherry, and apricot trees. I miss hearing the stories of your well respected father & the way you sprinkled your food with salt before tasting it the way I do. Your name fitted you perfectly. Anwar, “he glowed/lit up”. You certainly lit up every room with your respect, nobility & kindness, traits that many Damascene men & women remember you for since your youth
الله يرحمك يا جدو. بدي زورك وسلّم عليك عن قريب
Photo and story submitted by @hani.al.allaf #zamaaan

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