there was a story recently of a ex-pat returning to do good. this is definitely not a first time. I have repeatedly seen my uncle come with bulbs over his head and return with a frown on his face. But this dude was different. there was an interesting story to how he went abroad in the first place! And for that, he was receiving a lot of media attention - was or is going to be featured in Ittadi; and is going to be the main feature of a documentary (in the making) titled 'Bridging Two Worlds' (co-produced and co-directed by Hanif Shongket). Anyway, this kid escaped a violent beating father in his village by running away, landed in Dhaka, got listed in an orphanage with prior knowledge of chances to go abroad that way. He told them his father was dead and that his mother was seriously ill. Later, at between age 8 and 10, luck struck, and he was adopted by a woman from the Netherlands. Thats how we went away.

he returned now and went looking around for his family again. having properly identified his brother after struggling with a few imposters, he went back to his old village and met his family again! And he has been working to improve things in that village since then.

i read this story in Prothom Alo's magazine last week, as did most of my relatives. at my khala's dinner table a discussion came alive on this dude's grand life adventure. how he ran away from home thrice to escape a father that was beating him. how after the first run, he became so fond of the free life. and how amazingly, he was a good student and sportsman later in his youth in Netherlands.

my cousin who is a tablighi was also there. all he could say, repeatedly was how we lost his religion along the way. i was wondering whether he was thinking of 'why'? or of how we might have still retained being a 'muslim' had he not gone away? i wonder what sort of a muslim he would turn out to be? verily there are lots of variations present in society under the label of 'muslim'.