One day a fruit seller while passing through a village enters into an empty street. He stops by under a tree shadow to take some rest. Then after taking some rest and drinking water he starts dancing for himself.
While he is focused dancing, a group of street kids watch him from distance and slowly come closer, sit down quietly and don’t interrupt. When the guy ends his dance, he finds the kids sitting there. He passes them a smile. Children ask him to dance again, but he has to go.
But inside him, he promise that he would come again in the street and dance for himself (and the kids would enjoy too). He irregularly visits the street, sometime once a week, once a month and sometime even after several months.
He’s not coming back to dance because of the children’s amusement but because of himself. He knows he should be doing it regularly.
I am the fruit seller. This blog is the street. Writing is like dancing for me. You’re the kids. Hello kids! I’m in the street again.
Remember that I used to write, sometime quite frequently. But it hasn’t been happening for some time now.
Part of that is because I am really busy at Hometown. Part of that is I have been lazy about, and was finding it difficult writing at personal level. Also (believe it or not) part of that is because I no longer like this platform as much. Everytime I or someone landed on my website. It would show you some really silly and unrelated Ads on my page. So I was looking into a new place for my writing.
So my blog is moving to SVBTLE. It is a new kind of magazine platform and they are trying to make it easier for people to share and discover new ideas. Part of that includes helping writers (like me) with copy editing and fast-checking. I think I am gonna use them to improve my writing skills.
Good thing is that my blog address will still be waqasali.me and you can also subcribe via email. So let’s see how it goes and thank you for sticking and riding along.
I am sharing a glimpse of what is happening around HOMETOWN.
This is what’s keeping me away from blogging too.
HOMETOWN started without any formal office, we used KFC as workplace. As they had power all the day and let us sit.
Three days back, we shipped our first shoes to India. Randhir, our customer took the risk of ordering shoes from Pakistan. It is not conventional to ship something from Pakistan to India, because of the political tension between both Governments.
It was a moment of trust for him. I am proud and humbled to say the trust is well placed.
There comes a time in life, when you prepare yourself for a big day. You have thought about this time for years. And now you finally made it in a series of events.
For some it is getting admission at a remarkable college, or marrying with right person, for some it could be buying the first shoes for their parents.
Here at Hometown I and my team are in the middle of such moment right now.
Launching HOMETOWN! Oh WOW! Our first collection includes, ready to wear men shoes, wallets and belts and a special Pakistani footwear, called Chappal.
So no matter who you are, what you wear (canvas trouser, jeans, kurta or anything in between), and in which part of the world you live. You can surely shop one thing or two, or just come over, see what we have been doing, tell us what we should. More, you can also get custom shoes just made for you.
HOMETOWN came into exist for two main reasons, I and my team wanted to play our best shot so far, and to make use of exceptional skills of our craftsmen.
We short-listed several products, tried to find what can be done, and what will work best. For example, we failed 24 times, to make one of our Chappal. And now when we see it, we feel like, you know how it feels.
They say, journey of one thousand miles start with one step, it can be short, or slow, but it is probablly the most important. We have taken it, you’ve taken it, if you are reading this post and I so believe together, we’ll learn how to live a better life and celebrate all what it has to offer.There is so much more to say, but I’ll let our products and service communicate that with you. Thank you so much for being with all the time, and if you have any thing to say, I force you to write in comments on Hometown Blog or here.
Just now when I was coming out of my washroom, I saw an ant moving on the sink. At first it did not look like an ant at all. I thought it is anyother comparatively bigger insect. But when I got closer, it was an ant holding a piece of food bigger then itself. I think we become what we carry.
We can carry anything, a camera, a hope, some anger, business idea, a flower, thoughts of revenge, a regret or anything out there. Some time you can even carry an idea which could connect 850 million people. In short, everyone of us is set to ship something.
I often whisper: “A lot gets changed, and it’ll be changed more by time.”
Lately I have been in lot of changes, mostly positives.
Now on this blog I want to talk about what I am doing, rather than what I or you should be trying becoming.
As some of you know, I am trying building a startup. A real business where I have to convince people to buy my product (mostly shoes). In fact I am learning how to make physical products from scratch. And how to ship when it is hard.
Now I am realising this more than ever that why someone like ‘Sheeda Dabay Wala’ (Sheeda box maker) is smarter than guys with an MBA from a leading business school.
Entrepreneurship is fun, but at the same time, probably the most sensitive fun one could ever have. For example, yesterday someone stole my motor bike from the parking. This bike was gifted by my brother to help me in my business. And now it is with me no more, but then no matter what, let’s keep shipping.
Let’s keep shipping for what we set overselves.
In coming days and months, I shall write how I am building the business and what is important which I am learning, relearning or unlearning.
My focus will be more on the business and workable side of the world rather than just preaching how to be a better human. Better human is important, but one can help more people if you have the idea of getting something physical out of that.
In short I am all set now. The site name is changed from ‘Waqas A Day’ in to Waqas Ali.
And yes, now we have a tagline/message: “Set for Shipping.”
This Monday afternoon, I was walking back from a bank where I had some work. On my way back, there were few cars parked on the service road (frontage road) when I heard the sound of breaking glass.
It was a guy, who broke the door glass of a parked car to get the laptop + bag out. While his friend was on motorcycle ready to leave any second. When the guy near car saw me turning back, he signaled me to go back. But I kept advancing carefully.
The guy felt nervous, left the laptop bag in the car, and escaped on the bike with his friend.
Now I had no idea, where is the car owner. As there were couple of big buildings around and he could be in any of them. I thought to wait and guard his valuable bag and other stuff in the car. Actually I was afraid those guys can come back to take the bag. I waited for 30 min till the owner came.
When I was waiting, the idea of stealing came into my mind too. One of the major reasons was, I badly want and need a laptop.
I have no laptop of my own, this one which I am using now is of my friend Sidra and she is so nice to give it to me. But yes she needs it back too.
It was not just the thought of stealing came into my mind. Then I said to myself, “This laptop is very valuable to the owner as well, and he needs it to work on it too. So honestly return this property back to whoever is the owner.”
It is so nice now to think about what I decided, I felt like a hero after this. In fact some of my friends said this too. But believe me, it is ain’t so easy. And at the same time, it ain’t so difficult.
Later that evening, I got many good words from my friend and a very encouraging phone call from mom. That is the best reward.
Here is the response to my Facebook status update:
Let’s close it, so what makes us a hero.
1. I and you are always surrounded with the thoughts of being selfish and taking share of someone’ else. What matter is the patience, believing that earned is always better than the given.
2. If someone asks me, who is the most special person in the world. I would say that is me. Everyday I go against myself, to go with myself.
NEWS: I got funding for my business project. Read below to know more. 😀
Earlier this year on Jan 28 (which is my birthday), I shared what I have in mind for 23rd year of life.
“This year is gonna be the most important phase of my life. I especially love having all of you on this journey, through blogging, social media and phone calls and yes in person. I’m looking forward to execute number of projects in business and of my life.”
Here is what happened so far, instead of getting more business I started disbelieving in what I was doing. I started feeling unhappy about myself. <– I think it happens with everyone of us at sometimes.
But writing this blog made me focused again, I kept going with learning, making more genuine friends. I started loving and believing in myself.
In 2010 I was having a conversation with a group of people in my hometown. Who were talking about how things are in Pakistan and how west is involved in all this. A 51 years old guy named Mohd. Hussain (who is now my friend) told about a text message stating how Facebook is hurting muslims by promoting blasphamious content.
Then I interrupted the discussion and told them what is true and what really is social media. Later me and Hussain had a long conversation where he told me about his business. He and his small team, makes 100% hand-stitched leather shoes.
Because of very limited resources, they were compelled to sell them to some big brands. Which makes money from him, and he doesn’t as much.
I asked him, why don’t we sell them online, I offered him my help. But we couldn’t get started because both of us couldn’t arrange extra money for that.
I kept trying, asked to some of my rich friends but resulted nothing. Then I started looking for funding, we applied at P@SHA ‘s Social Innovation Fund, and yes we made it.
Out of 370 ideas which were submitted, we made in the first 3. You can see first round winners by clicking on the image in left.
I appreciate P@SHA, sponsors and judges who encourage my idea, and providing financial and consultancy support. Me and my team is genuinely thankful to them for believe in us and what we aim to do. It’ll be fun and the work we will love to do.
And I believe coming days are far brighter and full of learning. Thanks to each and everyone of you, who visit and encourage me. I’m happy to surround myself with people who lift me. And I look forward to kill what I eat.
One more thing.. There is also another interesting and big project I’m working on with some of the best folks I know. Stay here.. Right here and we’ll make it.
I’m so happy, this’s post which is also 100th post on this blog is a truly special. I believe no need to outline today’s learning, just keep learning, relearning and unlearning. Change your actions to achieve different result and you’ll change world for you. Thank you again very much, I’m full of gratitude now. Happy!
Have something to say? Would love to see you in comments.
What I am going to do. This is the most important decision we make, because deciding once, what we are going to do, shapes everything.
Let’s say you’re going out with family today. It will shape, who you are going to meet with, what you’re going to eat, how much travel you’ll have to do etc etc.
It was 2003, I remember that day. When I happily asked one of my class mate, if his mother is teacher too (my mother is an elementary school teacher for 27 years). He replied, “No, not at all. We don’t allow women to do such (dirty) jobs.”
And I did never talk to him again. 30 years ago, my mother made a choice, at that time there is was only single school for girls in our town and it was an elementary. She waited for an year, to study further, and then eventually with a lot of hard work she became a teacher. And it changed her life.
She was married, and then things went wrong. My father used to live for months far from us, and that time my mother was alone to feed us, our school fees and every little and big things. I believe if she would not be a teacher, then I would be a motor mechanic or something like that instead of a blogger and digital media learner.
Our goals and tasks make all other decision of our life. It is very simple, e.g, am I going to open Facebook in my browser or read a story, or am I going to write a new post. It decides everything.
For example (please make it real —>), if you decide to take care of your family. You’ll have to make decision like these, not to smoke any more, go for a walk. In short you’ll try your best to give a better person to your family.
Writing this blog has helped me a better human. When I decide to write a post, I do. I look into myself how ‘something which I’m going to write/preach’ relates to me. And it helps me change my actions.
Steve was very right, he emphasized on finding exactly what to do. And it worked well for him. Right now, like most of us, your mind is filled with thousand of ‘to do things‘ don’t bother. Just find on what you are going to do, find it, find it.
Because when you’ll decide what you are going to do. It is gonna change everything for you. And it is gonna change you into a better and happier and of course a healthier person.
Do you have any ‘what to do‘ story to share, or/and please share your leading thoughts in the comments below.
Two years back, I watched a documentry on Nation Geographic, Jailed Abroad, a 30 year old black guy was just released from the jail after 5 years in prison. He commented, ‘I have decided to become a better person for my 6 years old daughter and my wife. I think it is never too late.‘
He was right. It is never too late. Thank you.
PS. I am working on several things including my book (I have no idea how will the book go), this is why blog is lacking new post. Rest is all fine with me, how’re you?