The Story of a Young Man

Omar EL MOUZ is a high school teacher of English. He Got his BA from the department of  English at Ibno Zohr university, Agadir. He is interested in writing articles and stories, translating written works from English to Arabic or Arabic to English.

Agadir, Morocco

Beyond the borders of his homeland, in the corner over there, sat a man of no company, except for some scattered books in every spot in his untidy room. His long velvet robe touched the ground as he moved aside. His eyes kept scrutinizing the tiny words he found transcribed in the last page of a book he came across in the book fair he visited recently. His mind, full of unorganized ideas for which he made a deal to sacrifice, foreshadowed uneasiness in catching every single word he heard, read, or saw. The chilly weather there didn’t freeze his ambition to break the virtual fences built before him. His looks conveyed what many books couldn’t explain. His solitude helped him to strengthen his relationship with books.  A young man of his age somewhere was supposed to be enjoying his youth supplied with tools beyond his desires. Another couldn’t even spend a second in such an unbearable atmosphere. However, this young man made a decision for his entire life, or at least for the most precious stage of his life. He said farewell to his joys which were witnessed by many youngsters of his age. He made a commitment to serve humanity in what is mostly labeled the noble job.

At first, he couldn’t bear the fact that his young flourishing ideas were faced with such unbearable conditions. He encountered a multifaceted form of ignorance and disdain. He was always pointed at as that fake image of the state that tried to usurp the pride of the locals. In his mind, there was a hope for the best for everybody because he had made a commitment never to betray his faith and his strong belief in his ambitions. Some colleagues to whom he was really indebted tried to show some kind of support and cooperation. He couldn’t hide that feeling. He was always open for any gratitude and appreciation towards those whom he thought deserved them. His generosity went far beyond his inner self to transcend to anybody who was so close to him in one way or another.

On a sunny day, as usual, the young man woke up and prepared his humble breakfast which was usually composed of no more than a small slice of bread with mint tea and olive oil. The young man who was nicknamed Ouzar launched his first day of work. He headed toward the remote zone to which he was told he had been appointed. The distance was not that easy to bear. However, he didn’t have another choice. No means of transport was available for him to shorten the distance. No bus was there to wait for and no vehicle to make use of. His only jacket was that of his brother’s whose unconditional help and support he appreciated so much. He put on his low cost trainers which he haf bought some years before in a second hand shoe shop and a pair of jeans that were witnessing their fourth year of use. His bag was in no relation with his newly assigned job. However, it was rather a faithful companion during his long frequent travels throughout the country. Some of these travels were for duty while others were made for pleasure.  For him, that job was not to be paid for but to take it for a duty that anybody who had got an amount of knowledge with some spirit had to pass through. He had been obsessed with those ideal and utopian thoughts he had been taught somewhere. It was not until a couple of years later did that idea undergo some modifications in his mind.

The difficulties for Ouzar were in the form of an unending overflow. The way to work was unbearable. He could see a vast land of spiky herbs, some typically desert plants, and pointed stones and rocks bordered with a series of sharp peaked mountains. The scene of tall palm trees and of a valley beside Draa River in the distance was so picturesque at first. Unfortunately, it was portrayed later to be coined with an amalgam of hardship and torture. He moved with a steady gait that reflected his long lasting struggle for his ideas to be in balance. A walk of about an hour was enough for the first two corners of his so-called school to arise. He thought at first that it was a small hut of one of the locals. Unexpectedly, as he came close to the building with a feeling of both surprise and shock, he realized that his guesses were wrong when he discovered that it was his newly assigned place of work. The screams and hubbub of small kids were heard. It was not until he approached did he notice a four legged chair beside what was to be shown later as a classroom. ‘‘It must be the teacher’s,’’ he thought. He stopped for a while and then proceeded reluctantly as if he had intruded somebody’s land.

Ouzar was soon recognized by one of those who was to share similar conditions as his. His mind was split into diverse directions. At that particular moment, he could recall all of his past memories. A feeling of guilt went through his mind combined with a belief in destiny. He thought of his early undergraduate studies and tried to remember the enjoyable moments he couldn’t revive again. He kept contemplating the scene before him and tried to make suitable associations with his work. A few months before, he had been told about the bright side of education and teaching. He had been provided with many ideal tools and had spent long periods of time analyzing the ways he could make use of them to prove his role in society. Contrariwise, the reality he faced at that particular time was ruined in seconds. The man next to him showed some kind of welcome and expressed an interest in providing help when necessary. Ouzar sat on the edge of a table when he got into that classroom which was built of mud and covered with plaster. The roof was made of many cores of palm trees and some small sticks for decoration. One single flap blackboard was hung on the wall, and some tables with reasonable amount of dust were scattered on the ground. The young man tried to break the ice and got in touch with his co-worker. He first inquired about the latter’s origin which was shown to be Marrakesh. The two dwelt upon different issues and then dispersed and left the floor to those innocent kids to get into the classroom.

The four hour time span passed quickly. Ouzar had an idea about his first day of work. He realized that he was in vital need of changing his mind about that job. The long way back home made him completely exhausted. The rocky road was always there to witness his presence. The sun focused on his head and contributed a great deal to his dizziness. He got into his small room and had a look at one of his favorite books. The word ‘change’ which he had engraved on a wooden table before drew his attention. At that moment, the expression ‘be the change you want to see in the world’ popped into his mind and raised his ambition once again to fulfill his aims regardless of potential difficulties. 

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