There is an odd sense of being conspicuous and invisible at the same time when you - a 21 year old ex-student - walk into your school , clad in a black burkha , veil and all.
Anywhere else , be it the supermarket or a park , being veiled gives you the liberating zest of being comfortable in your healthy , de-glamorous body while wondering why you impishly enjoy your path of anonymity as opposed to that of the non-burkha , non-veiled woman.
While in your old school , as your step into its premises , you smile : a veiled smile. You watch unfamiliar students passing by ; a few cast curious looks as you walk guardedly , comfortably aware of your direction. You love to walk its gravelly ground and under a deep blue sky , standing on the playground of your school , with the winter sun teasing your wind-chilled body , there is an overwhelming sense of peace and loneliness - when you stand at the ground which is empty , while the classes go on in classrooms where you can never sit in again , not as a student ; classes where you can never , listen to soporific lectures on the chemistry of amino acids , experience the flurry of submitting assignments under basilisk-ian deadlines , never write a biology exam with the exhilaration of knowing most of the answers...
And many such humdrum activities that to you , are forever lost in the fog of ageing.
It is in school where you still find the impulse to de-veil while inwardly conflicting with your lessons in Faith. Its so very tempting to smile hugely at your old teachers with your misplaced front tooth pushing forward with the rest being primly in line !
At the age of 13 , you sneaked to the beauty parlour for a 'facial'. The beautician's assistant - a slim 'parloured' specimen with lovely eyebrows , no teeny-weeny hairs on her pretty face , a pout on her peachy lips - suggested a removal of your facial hairs prior to the steaming ; and you , entranced with visions of a smooth , glowing face consented...
You did not subject your thick eyebrows to her threading on that fatal day ; for which you remain heavenwardly grateful at preserving their natural blatant beauty.
Years later , and perhaps as long as you look into the mirror closely , you murmur apologies to your mirror image for the extra growth of hairs on the sides of your cheeks.
Ofcourse , you could do it again , and again and yet again or even permanently have them removed. But you have learnt your lessons in Faith and Beauty. If you wish to preach , you must practise!
Without faith and knowledge , you may have succumbed to the pains of creating artificial glamour (and 'confidence in your beauty') without realising the beauty that was naturally perfect in yourself , and others with their crooked teeth , their hairy appendages , their bushy eyebrows.
You have been told to visit the dentist and there are gentle innuendos regarding your complacency with no-parlour policy...yet you are stubbornly firm on your perception of beauty.
To end this harangue , you quote yourself :
' If he cannot see you as beautiful as you 'really' are , you must become an opthalmologist....'