- You have recently visited a war-riddled country with your family. You have been asked to write an article for your school magazine relating your experiences. In your article include the following:
- What you saw
- What were your emotions
- What you learnt
My Visit to Alasiah (STOP BEING UNGRATEFUL)
The most tragic experience of visiting a war-riddled country, Alasiah.
By: Areesha Fatima
October 28th, 2019.
Have you ever visited a war-riddled country? I am sure a very few number of people have. So, you cannot even imagine the pain and emotions of the people living there. I will make sure that you will be able to feel their pain and hopefully visit a war-riddled country in the future after reading my article (my experience).
I saw thousands of hungry, frightened and betrayed faces as I made my way through the tiny huts made out of straws. As I entered one of them, I saw three girls lying on the dirt floor of their hut. They were helpless. Their teary faces could bring tears on any or everyone’s face.
Moreover, Alasiah had been under attack in a war since as long as I can remember. I had always wanted to visit a war-riddled country so I could help them in any way.
Seeing broken families was really breaking me. There was this old woman who laid in her hut, abandoned by relations who were too weak to carry her. I could see every other person struggling, struggling to survive.
I was extremely sad when an unexpected thing caught my attention. I saw a feeble smile. An old man quietly sitting outside, leaning on a tree and smiling. What was it about that smile? How could he smile? It was not a smile of greeting or a smile of happiness. It was neither a smile of any sort of sadness or sympathy. This smile moved me in a way that was unexplainable. It touched me.
This was the face that I will never forget.
My reaction to everyone and everything else I met and saw that day was a mixture of disgust and sympathy. There was utter despair. The feelings of disgust came from the extreme degeneration of the human body, people suffering from kwashiorkor (lack of protein, body mass). The twin evils of hunger and disease had taken over the whole of Alasiah.
A heartbreaking incident occurred when I saw a five-year-old child with two small pieces of bread. I came to him for a photograph as I had to inform and provide my school with every detail of Alasiah. So, as soon as I went to him, he immediately put his hand forward with one piece of bread and offered it to me with the most innocent expression I had ever seen. In no time, my teary eyes made an eye contact with his pure and innocent eyes (as his eyes spoke for him). I held his hand and took out a granola bar and any other treat from my backpack and handed it over to him. He quickly hugged me.
It was the most satisfying hug, ever!
This hug reminded me of the smiling old man, who was no longer there when I saw him. I knew before my visit that I will definitely see and learn a great deal of things but this smile only brought one word to my mind again and again, grateful.
Despite going through so many hardships, that old man was smiling. It made me regret everything I did when I was ungrateful. This man had not uttered a single word but had left me with so many questions to think about.
Alasiah has my heart!
It has made me into a stronger and a better person. That is why I have decided to publish this article in the school magazine so that you guys will be able to learn from my experience. I hope this article motivated you to be as grateful as possible.
One thing I really want to do is, is to meet that old man again and thank him for how without even talking to me, he has changed me.
Stop being ungrateful!