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Solo Road Trip to Champaign

March 16, 2004

 

 

So Friday after jumu’ah, my boredom that had been plaguing me throughout spring break reached a critical point and I couldn’t take it anymore: I had to do something entertaining. No one in Chicago was free; apparently school, spouses, and jobs are more important… bah humbug. So around 5:30 pm, I decided to take up my Champaign boyz (Isaac and Fiddy) on their invite to come and hang out with them.

 

Mugshot and picture of these guys, probably to end up on an FBI or other law agency wanted notice:

 

 

From left: Farooq, Isaac, Farhan (Fiddy)… aka the three stooges. on right is Will Ferrell from “Old School”, the movie that best typifies Isaac.

 

And man was it worth it…

 

Despite the solo road trip with no one but Shaykh Hamza to keep me company, I made good time and arrived at Chambana at 11 on Friday night. Now, for those who haven’t been down there, understand that this is a bufu town with nothing to do… or so I thought. What I failed to realize was I was about to experience one of the greatest things to do on a Friday or Saturday night…

 

…heckling drunk people. Driving around Chambana at 2 am on Friday night as all the drunk people were exiting the bars and yelling at them as they were staggering home was hilarious. From things like asking people to directions to Green St (when we were already on Green St) and telling people talking on their cell phones to stop acting like they’re talking to someone, I had the funnest time partaking in this adventure. After looking at these poor fools and realizing how wasted they were, I realize another reason why God says not to drink: so you don’t have crazy Moslems heckling you from their cars. The funniest moment had to be when we pulled into an intersection where a cop car had stopped a fight between two people. One of the friends of the fighters was walking away, using our car as a ‘screen’ between the cops and him. The cops told him to stop but he pretended he couldnt hear and tried walking away nonchalantly. Being the instigators we are, one of the guys in front seat rolls down his window and tells this white boy, “Run dude, the cops are after you, run!” The guy appears confused for a minute and then begins to run, look back, and then takes off in a sprint, running in between buildings while this out-of-shape cop tries to keep up. We follow the escapee, only to find that within 2 minutes, there’s like 5 cop cars closing in on this guy and making a ring around him. finally, they catch him and arrest him on the hood of a cop car and haul him away. The irony? This guy wasn’t even fighting and prolly didn’t even do anything (besides being drunk) except not use his judgement and listen to our ‘suggestion’ to run. Yet another reason NOT to drink

 

The next night we again harassed people after the bars closed. This time we found a naive group of three girls and asked them for directions to a given place:

 

Us: how do you get to Green St?

 

Them: take a right at this next light and then take a left….

 

Us: ok, so take a left at this next light? (drive off, take a left at the light as they’re shouting for us to take a right)

 

[we then circle around the block and catch up with them]

 

Us: hey, why you gotta give us bad directions? you told us to take a left and we took a left.

 

Them: NOO, take a RIGHT, RIGHT!

 

Us: a right? ok, hey guys, take a right (immediately we turn right, into a parking lot as they’re shouting at us to take a right at the LIGHT)

 

[we then circle out back and then catch up with them again]

 

Us: hey look now, you guys are really mean, we’re new in town and we just want directions and you guys keep giving us bad directions? you oughta be ashamed of yourselves (and we drove off)

 

After this episode, it was around 3 am and we 4 were hungry, especially myself for some pancakes. IHOP was packed with all the drunks so we were relegated to settle for this broke, ghetto-a$$ restaurant Perkins. We walk in and the place is only half full, yet it takes 10 minutes to even be recognized by someone to seat us. We finally sit down and place our orders for pancakes–nothing major, right? or so we thought–around 3:10. We then sat around, waiting for our order to arrive. It was now 3:50 and our food showed no signs of coming; worse yet, we hadnt prayed isha yet and isha time was running dangerously low with fajr starting to kick in around 5 am. So I look over to Isaac and I’m like, “dude, let’s just go, this is ridiculous”. Isaac’s like, “push me out, and we’ll go,” so I push him out of the booth and we 4 just walk out of the restaurant. We got into the car and started driving back but we were still hungry. Someone suggested going to IHOP, but it would take like another 30-35 min to order/wait for food with fajr time looming in the distance. No one wanted to go home and eat cause all we had was Isaac’s failed attempt at making chicken biryani, which looked more like mashed rice and chicken. So then I’m like, ‘what the hell, let’s just go back to Perkins, I bet right when we get there our food will be ready.’ So we drive all the way back to Perkins and walk in like we never left. As we walk in, the waitress is lugging around a tray of food looking for us in the restaurant and wondering where we went. She sees us walk in and goes, “Oh, there you guys are, I thought you guys left.” One of the guys then goes, “Oh, we just left to get a smoke break…”   And we all muffle our laughter as we quietly took our seats in the non-smoking section of the restaurant. Oh man, good times, good times.

 

Anyway, spring break went by way too fast and it was more like delayed winter break cause there was no springtime weather this past week. I’ve had to return back to camp x-ray, i mean, med school to face 6 more weeks of random information that somehow must be synthesized and applied come test time.  However, I shouldn’t complain since this part of the semester will hopefully (Inshallah) be a lot more laid back than the first semester and half. It’s time for me to get caught up on non-med school related reading and wasting time.

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