the seventh cup of tea

The other day, two of my dad’s brothers came over for lunch. After they finished eating, I served them all tea. I decided to sit with them, share some tea, and listen to their stories. When all three of them are together, I always get to hear something interesting.

So, one of my uncles starts telling a story of when they were kids back in Pakistan. The story goes something like this.

One night, my uncle was trying to go out late at night and hang with his friends. The only problem was that his parents had forbidden him from going out this late at night.

When his parents fell asleep, he snuck out the house through the back door of his room. Since his room was on the second floor of their home, he had to climb down from the outside of his room.

He hung out with his friends for a couple of hours. They played some cards, talked politics (that’s what they did for fun as youths). After some time, he decided to head back home.

Now getting back into the room would be the hard part. His parents were not heavy sleepers, so he had to proceed with caution. He climbed, quiet as a mouse, up to his room making sure not to make the slightest noise.

He got to the door to his room, and he found it completely closed. It does not seem like a big deal, especially since the door was unlocked. But he shook his head and muttered “idiot” to himself.

This particular door was one of those doors that made a really loud noise when you open it. And remember, his parents were not heavy sleepers. They would hear the door opening.

He looked for other options. Another door. A window. Something, anything. But before he even began searching he knew he had no other options. The front gate was locked, along with the other doors. And the windows had metal barrings on the outside so he could not get in through there either.


His only hope was opening the door quickly enough so that the noise was not enough to wake his parents. And it was as soon as he did that that the door made a loud sound. “CREEAAAAK!” Before the sound was over, my uncle was in his bed pretending to be asleep.

A few minutes later, nothing happened. There was nothing but silence all throughout the house. He was sure that his parents had heard him, and yet his dad wasn’t there to scold him.

Just as he began to actually fall asleep, his dad appeared in the doorway. He simply said, “I’m too tired to deal with this, but when you get up you’re going to be in a world of hurt.”

I wanted to share this story with you because it goes to show: teenagers are teenagers. For the majority of my life, I viewed my parents as having this completely different childhood because they were raised back in Pakistan. Many times through my life, my dad would tell me that he knew what I was going through, and my response was always “How could you?” But the older I got, the more and more I realized that we shared very similar experiences, and I wish I could have taken the advice he had given me at that time.

I have heard this story from my uncle. If what he said is true, then what I have said is also true. I have told you this story, may you go on with your life in comfort and gladness.

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