Monday, September 08, 2008

Being Happy

It's amazing how sometimes it can be so easy to be happy, while at others you have to kinda search for reasons. There are times when I get myself so worked up that I dont even want to try and come up with a reason to be happy. Very wrong I know, but there's no time like the present to realize one's mistakes and make amends/changes (especially now while we're in the holy month =) ).

I was tired of my folks harrassing me to move back up to the palace so I proposed an offer to them. Never in my most imaginative dreams would I have thought they'd accept. Of course there was like a 1% chance they'd go ahead and do something like accept the proposal and in the back of my mind I shrugged knowing that either way, whether they accepted or declined, I won. I imagine that they would have taken longer deliberating over things, but then fate decided to step in and accelerate affairs. Next thing I knew I was back in AD in the very same room I had been so happy to abandon over the summer. It took a few days for the realization to set in. But when it did I near cursed myself for not foreseeing that they'd accept and this would have happened. Felt pretty foul and as a consolation I decided I ought to spend some funds. I called the tennis coach in the AD Ladies Club and asked about coming in for a game. That would make me feel better I was sure. She told me she wouldnt be able to fit me in till 11pm. I was near floating with joy. Tennis at that hour of the night?! I've always dreamed of playing tennis at midnight. And even though 11 isnt exactly midnight it isnt really that far off - I'd be ending at midnight ;)

That night I got to the club early. There was someone already on the court with the coach. To my surprise the coach was seriously running down balls and giving the poor girl (who looked more of an upper beginner) a work out. NICE!!!! By the time I finished my warm up in the second court, the girl had finished her lesson. On the phone I had asked the coach if she had any students on advanced level that I could play with. I think somehow that came off sounding a bit cocky cuz she said she would need to test me first and then determine who she could let me play with (her tone was kinda contempt-ish). She said it was one thing for a person to come along and say that they are on a certain level but then when she pairs them with someone from the level the first person is claiming to be from its another story. She didnt want to be responsible for getting some advanced person and I turned out to be merely an intermediate player. I suppose that wasnt the best way to start off.

She started with a warm up in the service court. Familiar territory being that we start off the same way back in our club. The balls at first were normal. Cautious even. Then she upped the intensity, sent the balls a bit farther to the left and right. I chased every one of them. I had to make up for coming off as cocky to her by proving I was good enough to say I'm advanced. I felt like I was going to die though. Back at our club one at least gets a break between rallies when they hit the ball into the net or their opponent does. There was no way I wanted to hit any into the net and she definitely wasnt one for missing a shot. A few balls and multiple rallies later I was doubled over. Catching my breath seemed totally out of the question and my stomach felt like it wanted to explode. Admitting defeat would bring shame upon me and my beloved SLC. HA, all I needed was some water. (Water meant I could walk slowly to the water cooler and thus catch my breath and regain composure for the next trial). The coach was surprised, I think I was more surprised though cuz as I got water she went around collecting the balls. I was like what the?!?! (BTW there are lots of things this coach does differently and I guess it's to be expected. I never realized how engrained Coach M's ways are with me. Like for example, this coach is ok with the next student coming in and warming up while the other student is still in the process of having her lesson. This coach doesnt care if one goes in or out of the tennis court without closing the door. She collects all balls herself. Running cool down rounds is apparently optional in her book. She carries a bunch of extra rackets with her specifically for her students - and then she askes them what color racket they want and gives them a choice!) When I finished with my water break we went to the baseline. After a minute she realized my balls were ultra short and asked if I knew that. I said I did know and that it's something I've been working on. She showed me right then and there how to make them longer. In the process of implementing what I had just learnt I mistakenly put an underspin on my forehand return. (I usually can intentionally put underspin on my backhand returns but when I do it with forehands that is by chance.) So she asked if I meant to do that and if I knew the difference between hitting balls with spin/no spin. (She can hit a ball and make it spin in a way that when it bounces it goes in the opposite direction then you predict it to proceed) so she showed me how to just 'drive' the ball and how to put spin on it. It was all pretty cool. She had the same complaints about my backhand returns as coach does. No surprise, I know my backhand needs work. In the end though, she had lots to say. She said I really surprised her though and that she had thought I was overrating myself on the fone. She said she'd be happy to coach me whenever I wanted to stop by for a lesson cuz she doesnt come across many who actually are serious about tennis and are at my level. (By that time I wanted to just lay out on the floor and die, I think I must have ran around chasing balls the equivalent of 20 rounds!) I really loved the fact that she was up and running as much as I was, it will definitely take me alot of hard work to beat her in a game. I like that, something to work for.

The next lesson she asked to see my volley, smash and serve. My forehand volley she told me how to fix and I pretty much got it. My smash, lol she said I use smash power equivalent to her 9 year old's smash. Definitely will need alot of work. She was near crying over my serve. She said it was totally wrong and from now on, after my lesson is done, I am to stay extra time with another basket of balls she'll provide for me and work on fixing my serve. That'll be nice cuz as of now the only things I can rely on to win points during a game are my returns and my opponent's errors. One ought to be able to rely on other than returns and errors if they are going to beat 'the kid'. That is currently my tennis goal and I have all intentions of reaching it inshallah.

So yes, I have to be happy for the fact that I have a coach now that should definitely help me improve (not that I'm disowning my tennis coach, but admittedly I'll need more than her if I am to reach a level worth playing the kid with.)

I'm also extremely happy to have returned something I had borrowed from a friend months back. I admit that she had a good point in her protests as to why I shouldnt have been in such a hurry to give it back, but with the active imagination I possess it was bloody torture. I've always thought of her as a good friend, but she's more than that. Lol, as Christina (GA) would say: If I murdered somone she's the person I'd call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor. (She was speaking about her best friend Meredith).. I'm happy to have a friend like her.

I'm happy to have a tennis partner like Z. She's a good and caring person that one. The coming tournament I have to give her a win. I dont think we've won a single one of our doubles matches in a tournament =(

Hmm, I'm also happy it's the holy month, though I wish I knew where my dear Safi-sama leads Taraweeh prayers. It's one of my dreams to go pray behind him at least once! ='(

I'm happy that some of my bros seem to have grown out of their annoying phase and are kinda mature. Well, to be honest I guess it is just one of them. Two of them are still horrible terrors and the third is well, what can I say.. One day he might decide to show some maturity as well. My stepbros are amusing though. M, goes and gets me my favorite drink for iftar. And Little Annie , who despite still being little has somehow graduated to being called Ann, noticed I didnt have any pillows on my bed. He's taken to stealing pillows from any and everyone in the house, so by nightfall I usually have at least 5 or 6 stolen pillows on my bed or at my door if I have it closed and he doesnt want to disturb me. Thoughtful midget that one. I'm happy for them as well.

It seems I've blurred the line between happy and grateful.. Well, what I wanted to say was that being in AD isnt all bad. Sure it's still dead AD, and I miss sharjah and it's people and lively holy month vibes but I'm not going to sulk about. I'll open my eyes and find reasons to be happy Inshallah =)

Speaking of open eyes... I am pretty tired. I should sleep, especially since it's not really a nice feeling to force one's self up for suhoor only to just get a bite of cereal or egg and then hear the fajr adthan T_T. not a nice feeling at all...

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