“Assalamu alaykum, Farah! Did you sleep well?” Farah’s mother greeted her after her daughter had woken up.
Farah looked disgruntled. “Yes, I slept well, but how come I have to wake up at ten even on the weekends?”
Her mother shook her head. “Farah, even ten o’clock is very late. You should try to wake up earlier. Anyhow, when you are ready to come downstairs to breakfast, I’ve fried egg for you.”
Farah made a face “Egg!” she said, “Mother, you know I don’t eat eggs on Friday, I eat pancakes. I don’t even like it fried.”
“Well, whatever. At least eat it today then I will make pancakes for you tomorrow.”
“No! Why did you forget? I don’t like eggs, and you know that.”
“Farah, don’t insist and throw a tantrum over this! If you don’t eat it, it’ll go to waste, because Hassan and your dad have already eaten their breakfast. You are the last one as it is,” her mother said patiently.
“Well then, if I can’t have pancakes then I won’t eat anything at all,” Farah said angrily, leaving the room.
She went to her father’s room, to try to persuade him in letting them go to the beach, or the mall. “I’m feeling bored,” she said. Her father noted her expression, and he laughed. “How could you be feeling bored when you’ve just woken up!”
Farah shook her head. “No, it’s not that, it’s just that we never go out anywhere! You promised me you would take me to the beach, but some excuse was made, and we didn’t go after all. It’s not fair.”
Her brother interrupted her. “Besides, Father is ill today, so he can’t tire himself too much in taking you out to the beach.”
“But even last time you had to do something for my aunt, and we didn’t go.” Farah fumed.
“Well, it’s alright, if you want to go, we’ll go next week, if I’m feeling better, I promise. It’s just today that I felt tired from the morning.” Her father said, smiling at his daughter.
“Next week!” she stormed. “Next week will never come! If we’re going, we’re going today,” she said. Father looked tired. “Alright, dear, if that’s what you want.”
“Hooray!” Farah cheered.
The whole family was ready to go when Farah came out of the room. “Look, mother, do I look good?” She asked, and her mother gave a look. “Farah, why are you wearing your best clothes? Wear clothes that won’t get damaged too easily, if you’re going to play in the mud!”
Farah shook her head. “No, mother, I wanted to try on this dress, and don’t worry, nothing will happen to it.” Her mother shrugged. “Well, if it gets dirty it will be hard to get off,” she said, and they left for the beach.
When they arrived, Farah ran around, playing with the sand and water. Then, while doing so, she tripped and her dress was covered in dirty mud. She made a huge fuss, saying “Oh, look, look, my dress, it’s all ruined!”
Her mother looked at it and sighed. “Didn’t I tell you to wear other clothes? But you don’t listen. Anyway, be quiet now and we’ll see what we can do about it later. Eat these sandwiches I made for the picnic, you must be hungry.”
But Farah cried “Look, that man is selling Gobstoppers! Mother let me go and buy some, I love these Gobstoppers.” Mother frowned. “But, Farah, you know when you eat these kinds of sweets from stalls, you get a stomach-ache, and you don’t want that, do you? I also brought cookies, if you want to eat them.” But Farah’s eyes lingered on the man’s sweet-selling cart. So her mother gave her money, and she bought a whole packet of Gobstoppers for herself.
“Come on, Farah, let’s go home, it’s getting late, and your father needs some rest now.”
Farah looked reluctant at this call. “Let’s just stay here for twenty more minutes she said, and they did. It was only when Farah began to feel a severe stomach-ache, did they decide to go home. When they got home, her father had a high fever, and her stomach was hurting so much she had to have medicine, then she slept.
When she woke up, she saw her brother standing beside her bed. “Today was a bad day,” said Farah. “No, Farah, it wasn’t. Days aren’t good or bad, it’s us who make them that way. See, if you had listened to mama, none of this would have happened. But you didn’t, and this is the result.”
Farah was quiet. She understood what her brother said, and she vowed silently to herself to always obey her parents because they always know better.
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