It’s almost a year on from when I, Wifey, Thing I and Thing II left Bangladesh and returned to the land of our birth, England.
We knew it was going to be tough. Thing II could barely remember what it was like to live in the UK as we moved to Bangladesh when he was five. Thing I was older but she had adapted and evolved into Bangladeshi teen culture so much over the years that it was always going to be hard trying to figure out British teenage culture. For Wifey and I it was simply the pain of leaving a people we loved and a country we had very quickly come to think of as ‘home’.
Added to that, I had (and still have) a healthy paranoia of British state culture. I’ve long been a critic of the corruption inherent in a dominant Orwellian state – a corruption ‘hidden in plain sight’ in that the people have tacitly approved of the corruption written into our our rules and laws. These laws pretend to protect the innocent but are fatally flawed because they assume one thing which simply isn’t true: that bad guys won’t be bad if you make a law to stop them. By definition, bad people will do bad things regardless of laws and rules.
And so we see banks conning people out of money, politicians bending legislation to suit their goals, paedophiles working with children undetected for years and laws protecting those who would destroy the lives and reputations of others.
I knew all this and thought I was prepared for it. None of us could have guessed that the second half of this year would be so awful for us all. It’s been special too (I have to see positives everywhere were I can) – we have a place of our own again which we can call ‘home’ and the children have settled into a wonderful school with supportive, caring staff. My life as a professional writer has blossomed too and, inshallah, will be increasingly profitable next year. Nevertheless, we’ve been shaken by just how cruel people can be and how uncaring society is to its own. We honestly don’t want to be here, I’m afraid.
Normally, around this time of year, I’m looking forward to the coming year – perhaps with fear and trepidation, admittedly, but looking forward nonetheless. This year, however, I don’t want to even consider 2015 as a possibility. I can’t stop it coming but I refuse to acknowledge its presence.
There be monsters in the sea.