Nothing happens in life without a purpose, Divine has its own plans, it is simply we fail to see them as we already have our set priorities, that sometimes others set for us or we have them planned while being under the influence of our experiences and environment.
Opting for United Kingdom for higher studies was mainly because the research project that was offered to me to work on was an unexplored area of Science and I love to reveal the unstudied area of knowledge.
No matter how impressive the studies are, if while pursuing them, we do not learn to manage our life well and keep a balance between personal life and professional life, we can never stay happy whereas company matters. It is best to be among better human beings better to be alone than having bad company as such fellow beings can infuse nothing but negativity and unacceptability. The key to success and happiness is put your best to sustain connectivity while being positive.
It took me more a decade to learn wisdom, that helped me doing better Quality Science while spending a Happy Life Alhumdo Allah.
People present very different response while we are at homeland but once we go abroad life reality starts revealing. It was 6th September 2003 when I flew to United Kingdom for pursuing higher studies. Since the money for my subsistence was to be sent later, so I took along with me my savings in form of foreign currency notes ( around two hundred dollars) within the permissible limit. On-airport in UK on feeling hunger, I bought an apple, the shopkeeper gave me change in form of small value coins. On starting the session, we students shifted to residence halls temporary to get familiar with upcoming University Life and get prepared for challenges to meet comfortably leading to success. I love interacting with good people and it was a good experience meeting so many people under one roof. I still remember when I met our Pakistani Batch Mates, my opinion was we could never be good friends as there was an obvious incompatibility among personalities but divine’s decision was very different that I was unaware at that time. I was carrying a huge luggage that was impossible for me to shift it alone to residence hall where we were supposed stay for whole session and I was all helpless.
I prefer not to disclose the name for privacy matter but he was the same guy for whom I was sure in our first meeting that we can never be good friend rather even friend who helped me finding a shared transport to carry the stuff to the hall.
I spent most of my life in Karachi that s a warm place whereas UK is comparatively cold place for me to live. I am extremely bad in remembering routes, whereas in most of the international travelling I was accompanied with officials to help me in doing the necessary shopping and for other outdoor activities.
Though it was September those days but weather was cold for me. On shifting in residence hall, I requested our Pakistani Batch Mates to plan a trip together to the market so we can buy the stuff we need. They all promised and all disappeared except the one, very likely because he also believes in keeping words. Our concern was food and my individual concern was warm clothes and money. I had very little amount of money to survive until the end the PhD all at my own while supporting the family back at home as well. At that time our concern was what quantity of food should be purchased. I knew cooking but what quantity of ingredients are needed for cooking food for a given span of time was something I was unaware at that time and so was he. However we bought basic ingredients for cooking for which he paid but my prime concern was to buy duvet and its cost as it was cold for me those days. He took me to a cheaper shopping supermarket, I picked the duvet set but the main problem was payment. Since I only had change of 50 Pound in form of small value coins, that I got in return when I paid money for buying an apple at airport and I was not comfortable to open my wallet in front of him to count the money so I requested him to wait till I look for other things that I wanted. I went behind a stall and took out coins to count. It took me quite long to gather the coins and take out the amount of money that I needed to pay, he showed great patience did not make any complain about it. He helped me out of the way to cope with all the problems that I faced in my early days but my opinion that we can never be friends did not change, once I mentioned him straight away as well, onwards still he remained as kind as he had always been. Rather if I say I owe my life to him would not be that wrong, I am not talking in terms of any romantic affiliation that was not there at that time; within the six month of my stay in UK, I suffered from inflammation of thyroids, I became so lethargic that I slept for a few days in my room without having food. Probably he noticed my absence and came to my flat along with his friend with having some meat dish for me, She knocked the door of my flat to wake me up and we all together had meal. It is not very uncommon that abroad especially in Universities sometime students die in their rooms and others notice when decaying smell comes out. With Blessing of Allah and having meal in time, I was alive to work on the project, by then I got some indication in data leading towards among the most novel finding of this Era. My prime focus was on my research project, as due to having insufficient funding I had to get the work completed as soon as possible. Once my father while talking on phone asked me if I had any special friend. On hearing this, I became angry on Abu as for me my concern was the research project and there was no one in my life at that time. I did not realize at that time that Abu used to see dreams most of them came true, the reason for his question could be his dream as he never used to put questions on assumptions. On my return to Pakistan on Vacations On completing my first year of study, I could not ask abu about his question whether it was out of his dream or anything else as he became ill on my arrival and was hospitalized on very next morning. So far I did three most difficult promises of my life. The one was father took promise on his death bed that I would return to UK on the end of the vacations to complete my studies, take care of my siblings invest to promote friendship and never break the relations and relationship. Coming back to UK just after two weeks of Abu s death was extremely difficult for me but I have been brought up to keep words so with Blessing of Allah I managed to do so somehow. My University was away from London, on return to UK after Abu s death on end of vacations, I tried to contact people if anyone could offer me a short stay so that I could take transport at safer hours to my place but on not getting in touch with anyone I contacted him to ask if it was safe to travel at late hours by local transport and he said that I could travel. Again as always it was only he who was there for me to offer help in my time of need. Could I call this type of interaction a friendship but may be not as friendship is never need based.
Soon my research project made excellent progress and we were able to reveal most novel finding of this Era. However, my status of award of degree could not be upgraded to PhD and I end up making another very difficult promise. This time my research teacher took promise from me and that was to write the thesis under his supervision and submit it to the University whereas I was in opinion to write a paper instead. Since the work was novel, I got many offers to submit the work elsewhere under supervision of other Research Teachers to be awarded PhD degree but since I have a habit to keep words I could not make my mind to do professional dishonesty.
After finishing my initial write up for research degree, I started paying farewell visits. It was sometimes in August 2005 probably 8 August I am not sure as I cannot remember dates when I called him to visit his place. On my return from lab, we used to have tea together as I love to drink tea prepared by him, since then I do not like the taste of the tea prepared by anyone else. I drink coffee
That day, he prepared tea for me only. On my return he guided me to the bus stop where he took most difficult promise of my life that I would never like to disclose it to anyone else.
That year 14 August Pakistan Independence Day fell on Sunday and we all Pakistani Students celebrated it together on University ground and I saw him last time on 4th October, the Eid Day and said bye to him.
My opinion did not change we can never be friends as we are two entirely different personalities, one being very slow whereas other is too fast to understand.
More than a decade has passed I live in the same city where he is a visiting Professor but I never tried to meet him though I wish to do so merely because of the words I have given him.
During the last one decade, the progress of Science in my area of expertise is proven to be obsolete since my stance on the data present in my M.Phil thesis indicating the most novel finding of this Era is being under review.
At the time of submission of my M Phil thesis, I did not sign the documents necessary for transfer of rights on my work merely because my stance on the basis of my understanding on my data was different from others since I was not allowed to write a paper so that was the only possible way to inform the Global Research Community that a new horizon in Knowledge in Our Area of Expertise is revealed.
It took my efforts and a struggle extended over a period of more than a decade to make Global Researcher Community realize that ground reality on knowledge in our area is different than their conceived understanding on data.
I expect that sooner or later Science would acquire the correct direction for further investigation in our area of expertise and my part of the job as a professionally honest and committed researcher is done but the question remains where would the two most difficult (PERSONAL) promises of my life lead me.
One more thing, I used to be short tampered before going to UK but since the greatest misery of my Life took place when I shouted on phone I really do not know how to be angry… This anger of mine took soul out of my Life that s all what I can say.
I am absolutely bad in remembering dates but it took more than one decade to decide to make life wonderful and meaningful. We must get together for an everlasting relationship, even in Jannah.
The writer is associated with the Profession of Teaching and Research with having inclination towards exploring the Features of Nature while enjoying Food with Families and Friends. She is Assistant Professor at Department of Food Science and Technology in University of Karachi, Pakistan.