A Quick Update From the Fog City


One day I’m in the heart of Arabia, performing Hajj amidst more than two million Muslims, and a few days later I find myself walking up and down the hilly streets of San Francisco. I had two days between these trips to unpack and repack. Two days!

Masood is unwell so we’re just taking it slow today for him to recuperate and for me to update this blog. While we were quite healthy during Hajj, alhumdulillah, I began coughing twenty-four hours after we returned home. I have never had this sort of cough in my life: the kind that racked my body, kept me up all night, made me sound like a toad with pharyngitis, and felt like I’d cough out my lungs any minute. I insisted that we slept in separate rooms until I was no longer contagious but Masood thought it was a ridiculous idea and now, five days later, he sounds like a toad with pharyngitis.


Hajj has been quite a unique experience. Every person performing Hajj will tell you a different story. I had voraciously read other people’s experiences through their blogs or articles online and have mentally and physically prepared myself to face what seemed to be the most difficult and strenuous journey of my life. But by the Almighty’s Grace, I had the most comfortable and luxurious Hajj experience. In fact, towards the last couple of days, I pondered on the ease with which all the rituals were being performed and, for a second, wished for some sort of hardship to justify Hajj. They say almost all prayers are answered during Hajj; I can testify to that fact because the very next day I was almost crushed in a sea of people pushing and shoving, fainting and crying. Really, one should only wish for good things.

I still have a couple more weeks before we fly back home to Dubai. I am so excited to share with you all the details of Hajj but I need to be in the right state of mind and place to do that. So I’ll probably begin writing about it by end of October.

In the meantime, I am deriving immense pleasure from checking and comparing the weather every three hours. I’m glad we are able to escape the desert heat even for a few weeks.

weather report

Oh, and I’m still upset over the fact that my first view of the Golden Gate bridge has been obscured by thick fog.

On a more positive note, we took a hop on/hop off bus (and sat on the top, of course) whilst crossing the bridge and it was like sailing amidst thick clouds. It was also incredibly windy and cold. Quite an experience, I should say.

Thank you to my friends and readers who have followed my updates on Facebook. You guys are the best and make me feel loved. To the bloggers that I admire and follow, I miss  reading you guys!


  1. That cough! I also had a terrible cough when I came back from Hajj in 2003, I thought I was going to cough up my lungs! I returned with what the doctor called a ‘complex virus’ and recovered within a month alhamdulilah. I am so pleased to read you had a smooth Hajj experience, minus the one day your wish came true 🙂

    I’ve loved reading your facebook updates! I’d recommend you link it to your instagram account too, as I don’t log into facebook as frequently as I do with instagram. 😉

    I hope the fog clears up soon and you get to view the bridge in all its glory! Get well soon the both of you 🙂
    Londoneya recently posted..A Walk in the Park — in London

  2. Dear God,
    Since when did this girl has a second home in San Francisco??? You know how I feel about this. I am feeling so jealous right now! LOL… Anyway, alhamdulillah, she is fine (and kicking fog on the bridge as well), so I am happy for her. But please, God, I want to travel too… *giggle*
    Atie recently posted..Sending friends off to hajj

    1. Dearest Atie, I don’t have a home in San Francisco but I would definitely not mind having one! I’m absolutely in love with the city and its public transportation 😀

      OK, I’m also making dua that you get the opportunity to travel some place exotic, gorgeous, and relaxing – soon! 🙂

  3. Our first meeting with the bridge was hugged in clouds too – but I liked it that way (Vick didn’t)!
    So you’re on this side of the world again… but no visit up to Canada? 🙁
    Looking forward to reading more about Hajj!

    1. We’re exactly the opposites, ‘liya. Masood loved all the fog while I was hugely disappointed. Yep, Canada kept denying us tourist visas so we’ve stopped applying altogether.

  4. Loved reading your blog. Have quite a bit to cover . Thanks for the tips on Mussandam
    Best Wishes and Safe Travels

  5. I read Daughters of Arabia and there was an extensive section about the family performing Haj. The wife had to do all forms of coercion to her husband because he would not go to Mecca for fear of being crushed.

    It would be wonderful to read your account on it. You are very blessed, my dear.

    Welcome home back to Dubai!
    Kero Pinkihan recently posted..Visiting Disneyland California

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