Saturday, 16 May 2015

My Thoughts On A Book - 'The Dressmaker of Khair Khanna'

The second book I mentioned in my previous post - 'The Dressmaker of Khair Khana'.

SubhanAllah, it was a beautiful read. Simply put, this is a story written by yet another journalist who lived with. and witnessed what women with grit can achieve.

I was expecting some heavy emotions - the kind of sentiments that one will imagine when five young women are driven to make a living - both to feed them and their community - when the Taliban seized control of Kabul.

But I found myself rejoicing with smiles and cheering them on throughout the book.  With dreams of a good education dashed, Kamila Sidiqi led her sisters to take up dress-making. With the men in her family away from them, she is left without a choice but to bring food to the table. Her faith in her Creator, her will and tact brought so much more to the livelihoods of other women's families too.

Every time the sisters' made the perfect stitches, received a new order, managed to deliver a last minute bulk-deal, I was 'clapping hands' at their success and strength to hold together. At the marketplace, within the Sidiqi household which had become a make-do garment production line, at their business ideas (pretty bold ones), etc.

What was so attractive about this book was the reality - of how women are natural fighters. Not sounding cliche, but the book brought this out so beautifully. They - the sisters and other young Afghani women who came to join their business, had no self-pity. They all wanted to survive, were all professional-minded and really got down to business. I must say this again, such a beautiful display of strength.

I was finishing up the book while I was at the hairdresser's. Towards the last few pages, the authour, while meeting up with one of Kamila's brothers after some time later and hearing him recollect what his sisters have achieved - admits tearing - her first time on a reporting project.

At that point, as a reader, I reflected at what the girls had gone through too - and my eyes welled up, right where I was. Women fighting hard, to keep their families together, not giving up, and believing that Allah will make everything okay ... is just so amazing. Something so very close to my heart...

Definitely worth a read... for lots of inspiration.

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