Sunday, November 12, 2017

Living In London

London is one of the most popular city in the world. People from different nationalities live there and go for a visit. There are some benefits to living in the UK and some disadvantages too.
Advantages of living in London
1) Public transport easily accessible almost everywhere.  
2) Walking is good exercise. Pedestrian-friendly
3) More courses available
4) Public libraries and coffee shops available almost everywhere, useful for studying without being disturbed
5) Safer than other cities, that doesn't mean you should  let your guard down completely
6) Multi-national
7) Halal food options

1)   Some areas have high crime rates, especially in isolated areas and areas where tourists visit like the London eye, pickpoketing can happen. 
2) Tahara and najasa problems, especially in public bathrooms.
3) Weather, it can sometimes get too cold, especially in the winter.
London is a good place to live. However, safety and security, and climate changes can be a problem. My advice is to take care of your belongings especially in large crowds, don't  take the shortcut to your house at night by yourself, it may seem like a good idea in order to save time but your safety is the most top priority. Instead walk through well-lit areas at night. Trust your instincts. If someone ever makes you feel uncomfortable, then walk away and report them. It is better to be safe than sorry. Keep your doors locked whenever you leave the house, even when you are in it. 
That doesn't mean you should spend the rest of your life paranoid. Have fun, but be cautious.  For the weather conditions, try to be prepared. Read the weather forecast and wear a coat. 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The Missing Earring: Part 4

The next day, I told Andy about my dream and she gave me a I-told-you-so look. As we were eating breakfast, we spot someone familiar. I whisper to Andy, ‘’Andy, look, it’s that guy from my dream, the same guy we had questioned yesterday.’’
‘’Well come on then, let’s go tail him,’’ said Andy.
So Andy and I observe that guy and follow him as he gets up from his seat, all the way from the lift to his room. I found out that his room is next to ours on the same floor we’re in.
‘’Oh, brother,’’ I sighed.
Andy and I ended up trapped in this guy’s room.
‘’Oh no, we’re doomed!’’ Andy exclaimed.
The guy looks at us and smirks,’’ Well, well, well. We meet again.’’
‘’I’m Henry by the way,’’ he said grinning maliciously.
‘’I bet you’re wondering where your earrings and you think I stole them, did you?’’
‘’Well you know what,’’ Henry continues saying,’’You’re right, I did steal them.’’
‘’Why?’’ I asked.
‘’To make money,’’ he replied smugly.
‘’But sir, there are other ways to make money besides stealing other people’s possessions,’’ I said.
‘’Hey, don’t tell me how to do my job, lady!’’ he snarled,’’I do rob people for a living you know.’’
‘’You’re sick!’’ I shouted angrily.
Henry laughed evily, takes out a gun from his pocket and points it at Andy. Andy and I gasp.
‘’No, please don’t hurt her,’’ I  sobbed.
‘’Don’t worry, I won’t hurt your friend unless you cooperate and do as I tell you.’’
Hah, I’m not going to let this scumbag boss me around.
I kick him in the groin then try to take the gun from the guy’s hands, Henry tries to take it out of my reach but I’m stronger than him, so I succeed in taking the gun out of Henry’s hands and shoot him. Henry falls to the ground unconscious.
I just hope I didn’t kill him. I’ll call the police and tell them it was self-defense, which isn’t a complete lie. I did do it for self-defense but I also did it to protect Andy. I dialed 911 and told the dispatcher about what happened, the address of our hotel, and what Henry looked like.
Five minutes later, the police and ambulance came, since Henry has to be treated for his bullet wounds before he goes to jail. Thankfully, the police understood why I shot him and I wasn’t arrested.

Andy thanked me for saving her life. We hugged each other.
‘’I don’t know what I would do without you,’’ she said tearfully as she hugged me.
Andy and I went to this ice cream shop which was 10 minutes away from the hotel. I ordered chocolate ice cream and Andy ordered strawberry ice cream.
She smiled at me then said, ‘’ I have something for you. To show my appreciation for  your heroism, I want you to have this.’’  She takes out a red box then gives it to me. I open it to see my pearl earrings. I was astonished.
‘’What, Andy, how?’’
‘’As soon as you called the police, I decided to take a peak at this guy’s bag and I found your stolen earrings in there,’’ she said grinning at me.
‘’I guess you were right about him,’’ I said, ‘’we knew it was him as soon as we saw him I had a negative vibe about him, it turns out my instincts were right after all.’’

I was thrilled to have my earrings back. Andy and I embraced each other. I wouldn’t ask for a better friend than Andy. It was all thanks to her that I recovered my lost earrings. 

The End

Monday, June 12, 2017

The Missing Earring: Part 3

Andy and I started putting up signs of a lost earring, by putting our name, phone number and offering a reward to anybody who finds it.
Andy smirks and says, ‘’This is a good way to bribe someone who could have your earrings, Holly.’’
‘’I don’t think they’ll weasel their way out of it.’’ I laughed.
Andy and I order ice cream from the ice cream truck. I had chocolate and Andy had strawberry and vanilla. We observed other people. People-watching is Andy and I’s favourite hobby, we observe people through our binoculars without them noticing. We saw a woman pushing her baby in a stroller and a man with sunglasses who had a black bag. I know you shouldn’t judge people by their looks, but this guy looked suspicious, and Andy and I started getting negative vibes from him. I rummaged through my purse, took out my notebook and noted down our no.3 suspect. Andy and I confronted him.
‘’Good afternoon, sir,’’ I greeted him.
‘’Good afternoon to you, ma’am, what can I do for you?’’ the man asked.
‘’We just wanted to ask you some questions. Have you seen our lost earring, somewhere?’’
‘’What? No, I haven’t,’’ he replied warily.
‘’Really? Have you read the signs, sir?’’ I asked.
‘’What are you implying? You think I’m a thief, don’t you,’’ he said with gritted teeth.
‘’No, of course not,’’ I said backing away from the man.
‘’Well yeah, you’re acting like I stole it,’’ he said sarcastically.
We started to get suspicious because of the way he reacted when we asked him about my stolen earring.
Oh no, I wonder, the man knows we’re on to him, what do we do?
‘’Shouldn’t we call the police?’’ Andy asked.
‘’No, not yet,   we are still not one hundred percent sure that he’s guilty,’’ I replied.
‘’But, what if he is? He could be lying, you never know. That is how most suspects behave when they’re being interrogated.’’
‘’I guess you’re right,’’ I sighed then said,’’ but it is better if we don’t get the police involved, like I said, we don’t know for sure if it is really him. He’s innocent until proven guilty.’’

I had a nightmare about our no.3 suspect, which was the man we had confronted earlier, that he kidnapped Andy, then tortured her, while I watched helplessly. The guy takes out a jewelry box and a bag loaded with money, then laughs maliciously. I recognize the pearl earring which he takes out from the jewelry box as mine.
I wake up with a start, sigh with relief when I see Andy still sleeping peacefully next to me, safe and sound.

Andy was right, I thought, that guy could be a thief. Or maybe it was just a dream and my mind was playing tricks on me.

To be continued....

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Missing Earring: Part 2

The next day, Andy and I went to the maid’s office to interrogate her.
‘’Good morning, ma’am,’’ I greeted her.
‘’Good morning to you ladies, to what do I owe this pleasure,’’ she said.
‘’We just wanted to ask you something,’’ I answered.
‘’Well go ahead, dear,’’ she smiled.
‘’Umm, well, you see, a piece of jewelry, which is an earring has been missing from us, since yesterday.’’
‘’Do you have any idea of what happened to our earring,’’ I asked.
The maid hesitates then shakes her head. Andy and I walk away sadly. I take out my notebook, and made a note about the maid being our no.1 suspect.
Andy and I go to the front desk to report the theft to a receptionist, who I’ve learned that her name was Sally, I knew just by looking at her nametag. Sally smiled kindly and told us not to worry and that she’ll find out who the culprit and do anything to help us recover our lost property. However, Andy believes that Sally could be our no.2 suspect.
‘’Oh come on, Andy, this is ridiculous. How could it be her? She sounded genuine with us,’’ I said.
‘’Well you never know, she could be a good actress,’’ Andy implied.
‘’Hmm,’’ I said, then thought for a moment.

Andy might be right. What if the maid didn’t steal it, but Sally did. Or worst of all, what if Sally was the maid’s accomplice? As in, what if she was a lookout for the maid, so she can know when we are leaving, and when we are coming back to our hotel room.

To be continued.... 

Friday, June 9, 2017

The Missing Earring: Part 1

Hi, I’m Holly Brooks. I’m 18 years old. I live with my mum in London, in Harrow. I wear black round glasses , the same shape of glasses that Arthur the main character in my favourite show Arthur wears. Whenever, I lie  or get nervous I tend to play with my glasses just like he does. I have straight brown hair. I wear a long red top with a blue blouse with skinny jeans. Those are what I call my regular clothes. I tend to be shy in new situations  especially when meeting new people. I have one best friend who I can rely on, her name is Andy. We are complete opposites even though we’re best friends, but we have some things in common, we share the same fear, which is the fear of losing each other and we both like desserts which are chocolate tart and chocolate cake. I’m smart, but my grades are like average, I mostly get  C's. I’m quite good at solving mysteries as I’m very stealthy. My dream job is to become a detective like Nancy Drew, who is my role model. My best friend Andy is friendly and outgoing, she likes shopping for clothes and has a love for food like desserts. She makes good jokes which will make me laugh hysterically. She seems a well-rounded person because she is good at like almost everything, in both sports and academics. I  tend to be jealous of her sometimes because she is better than me in sports, which I don’t excel at.

Our story begins on how I solved my first mystery. Andy and were vacationing  in New York. We were staying at a hotel called Central Park Inn, which is very close to Central park, because when you look outside the window, you can see the scenery and view of Central park, with the sounds of the birds chirping. It was a bright sunny morning, Andy and I had just woken up and we were having breakfast downstairs. I had  chocolate chip cookies and hot chocolate. Andy had chocolate tart with milk tea. Andy was telling me a joke about how  a boy who had a hearing problem went to the doctor, then it turns out he had potatoes in his ear, that joke made me laugh so hard that I choked on my hot chocolate and started coughing violently. Then we discussed on what we were going to do and what sightseeing we were going to see. We then went back upstairs to our hotel room, which was room 304, on the third floor. As I brushed my teeth, I had an eerie feeling that something was missing. I wonder what it is, I thought. I looked in the bathroom mirror and I noticed that my pearl earrings were not on my ears. I looked through my handbag, luggage, under the pillow, and everywhere I can think of, but there were no earrings to be seen. I sighed.
‘’Andy, have you seen my earrings?’’ I asked.
‘’No, Holly, I haven’t,’’ Andy replied.
‘’I looked everywhere in this room, and I can’t find it.’’
‘’When was the last time you had it?’’
I recalled that I had taken off my earrings last night as I went to take a bath before going to sleep and forgot to put them back on. I told Andy about that. I also remember that as we went downstairs for breakfast, we put on a housekeeping sign, then all of a sudden I notice that our room was super clean. I think for a moment, maybe the maid could have stolen it.

To be continued...

Friday, April 28, 2017


Everyone gets jealous from time to time, even the most nice people and quiet people like me gets jealous sometimes. It is not Haram to be jealous, in fact it is normal, but there ways which you can control it and overcome it.

There are many reasons why we get jealous. Sometimes people feel insecure and feel like they are inferior when someone else has something which they don't have but want to such as a fancy car, a mansion, money, etc. We even feel jealous when someone else has accomplished something which we wish we had such as winning a contest, good grades. Even in relationships we feel jealous sometimes when someone who we're close  to spends time with someone else, for instance, you see your best friend spending time with another friend, you feel insecure because you feel like your best friend likes this friend better than you. Social media such as facebook, instagram and snapchat can lead to jealousy because we assume that people's lives are perfect just by looking at their photos, videos and statuses, but the truth is we don't know what they're going through.

Sometimes, extreme jealousy can  cause us to do things which are Haram such as suicide, bullying, stealing, gossiping and spreading rumors, ignoring someone and leaving them out of  a group on purpose.  Allah does not want us to act like this, because if  we resort to any of these negative behaviors there will be consequences such as; being grounded, getting your privileges taken away like mobile phones, being banned from going on field trips,  getting arrested, etc. Please think twice before resorting to any of these bullying behaviors which are listed above.

Here are some examples of cases of jealousy which has occured based on my own personal experience and in general. From my personal experience, I have a cousin who is my age had just got her own driving license. I felt a lump in my throat. I felt like I was going to cry. So I talked to my sister about it, who went through a similar experience and I felt better. I  no longer feel jealous of her right now,in fact I'm happy for here for what she has accomplished. Another example in general which did not actually happen, let's say I get a B minus and another girl gets an A star, my thoughts would be like, 'This is so unfair, I've studied so hard for this test, how come she gets an A star and I get a B minus!' Then some other girl gets a C, I feel relieved, 'Hmm, maybe I didn't do so bad after all, this girl who got the C, is probably feeling jealous of me and this  A star girl too.'  Another example which also didn't happen; my best friend shows me her new house which is huge, it looks like a mansion, she has like everything, a limo, more than six bedrooms and even her own burger king restaurant, here are my thoughts,'Oh she and her family are so rich, they have like everything, she is so spoiled, how come she gets  to live in this mansion while I get to live in a three-bedroom flat.' See what I mean? This is  how we feel like when we are jealous.

When you are feeling jealous, let out your emotions in a constructive way. Please don't bottle them up, it's not good. Do not resort to abusive behaviors which I have mentioned before. Don't ignore someone who you  are jealous of or give them the silent treatment, you don't want them to feel like,
'Why is she treating me like this? What did I do wrong?' In other words, you don't want them to think that they've done something wrong.  If you have ever hurt someone whether physically or emotionally, please apologize, they may or may not forgive you and sadly, your relationship might  not be the same as it was before. Whenever you're spending time with your close friend or family member  and you feel jealous, talk to them about it and try  to work it out and make sure that your jealousy doesn't get in the way, you don't it to ruin your relationship with others. right? Please don't compare yourself to other people. Their life might not be as perfect as it seems. Instead focus on your strengths rather than theirs. If you are facing extreme jealousy, and it is taking over your life please seek help from a therapist. Please talk to someone about your feelings whenever you feel envy towards someone. they can give you good advice and you never know, they might go through a similar experience as you. Trust me, you'll feel better after talking to someone.

Now that we've feel talked about what to do when you are jealous, but what about when someone is jealous of you? Here is what you can do. Firstly, try to talk to this person, remind them of all the things which they are good at, and talk to them about the tough experiences which you've been through, it might make them feel better. If a jealous person ever tries to physically harm you or emotionally harm you, please seek help. They'll learn their lesson soon enough.

Jealousy is a normal feeling to have which everyone including us, people from all different backgrounds and religions experience. However, it can lead to aggressive behavior like bullying.
There are ways to overcome jealousy by talking to someone you trust about how you feel.

Friday, January 6, 2017


Iraq is one of the best countries in the world. It is where I come from. The best things about Iraq is the culture, religion. Cities I've visited are Najaf, Karbala and Baghdad. Here are a list of things that I liked about Iraq and the things that I didn't like.
1) My family/relatives live there
2) People are friendly and welcoming
3) Feels like home
4) Grandparents buried there
5) My country, understand local language
6) Visting  Imams, Ali, Al-Khadim and Imam Jawad
7) Weather, when it is not too hot or too cold
8) Scenery

1) Reckless driving
2) Electricity going off
3) Muddy area, sand
4) Weather, when it is too hot or too cold
5) Traffic, congestion
6) Screaming kids
It seems like I have more likes than dislikes. Visiting the hadraths was one of the best experience ever. My sister's aqad took place there being arranged by beloved uncle sheikh, my favourite uncle. The hotels we stayed in were very nice and cozy, but not as cozy as staying in my uncle sheikh's  house. My plan for the future is to live in Iraq for like 2 to 3 years. 2 years in Najaf and one year in Baghdad. If all goes well, I'll live in Iraq for the rest of my life, residing in Najaf, and might work in Baghdad, that doesn't mean I won't look for a job in Najaf, depends on the circumstances. So far so good, I'm proud to be Iraqi.