Saturday, October 21, 2023

Of life, carpets, cardigans and wars

Artwork by Tarek Chemaly

On November 10, 2015, I published the following:
This year, we put the winter carpets early on with early November already being so rainy and cold where I am - hint: not Beirut - but back when times were more defined in terms of four seasons, there was a local expression which went "al sajjad min isteklal la chouhada" - the carpets from independence till martyrs. Independence day falls on November 22nd and Martyrs day on May 6th. Both were at the time national holidays which allowed women (and men) of the house to do the whole brouhaha associated with putting on the carpets and taking them off (which is very time and labor consuming mind you).

Well, this year, the cold came ever earlier, which is why today - was carpets day. Thankfully someone helped me with the whole load. Yes, yes, I am aware that this blog is mostly about talking about advertising and communication - and there is a new campaign on the street which, at best, is idiotic and I do not feel like talking about it (hint: It is a public health campaign, and yes, I ran it by three other people and "idiotic" was the kindest remark being said).
Which brings us to today and carpets.
And yes, the world is ablaze, thank you for reminding me. I am aware of it. Even if not in the daily grind of Beirut, I can still feel how convoluted everything is. But also, life is life. What I mean by that is simply that well - there's always daily chores to be done, and cooking, and cleaning, and heck - in the tumult of all of this - I managed to buy mother a winter cardigan and if you think this is simple, please try again.
Several years back frustrated from mending her cardigan - daily - I went on to find a replacement - the first was too tight (mother is minuscule but even size large - in men's! - was too tight for her liking), the second was not thick enough, the third was not of the color palette she would wear. So I went to the market and in one day, I visited 20 shops in the same day and in the middle of Burj Hammoud I found what I was looking for - color was correct, thickness was correct but it was not XL. It was obvious I was deflated, so the man suggested he'd go up to his shop's attic to see what could be done. And bingo, he manifested exactly the cardigan in XL.
So a few days back, as I was scrolling on instagram, a cardigan came my way on one of those resale sites. I knew it was it. And voila, mother fell in love when it was delivered yesterday (mind you she was not aware I was bring here a replacement to the aforementioned garment). Again, if you read above you'll discover it was really something like stars aligning for this to happen.
So there:
Carpets - done.
Winter cardigan - done.
Worrying about the war - also done but life is what it is.
So we march on bravely.