Disclaimer: This is not a blog post that waxes philosophical on the concept of fate and destiny. It is a simple story about a fan. Please stay with me…
It is springtime in Iran, but apparently nature didn’t get the notice. It went from winter straight to summer. Where are those beautiful breezy spring days??
The sudden shift into summer weather meant finally packing away winter clothes, getting our cooler (aka air conditioner) running, and plugging in the ol’ pedestal fan.
We thought about getting another pedestal fan to help cool down the house in place of running the cooler on those slightly less warm days. But a new one costs about 250 tomans on average. (That’s about $67, according to today’s conversion rates). Which isn’t a terrible price, but you almost always can find a secondhand one for much cheaper, thanks to Iran’s version of Craigslist.
However, because Qom is a “transit” city there’s always someone moving away. We found one family selling their slightly used fan for 150 tomans. I immediately contacted them, and we were set. Or so we thought.
It just so happened that they were hoping to give it to us around the end of May. The family had guests coming and still needed the fan. Sigh. (But we need the fan now!) Nevertheless, we decided to not buy their fan, as we weren’t going to be in Qom at the end of May anyway.
As luck would have it another family also posted that they were selling a secondhand pedestal fan. And for a great price of 50 tomans! We went over to their house and picked it up. However after plugging it in and having it run for about 30 minutes, I happened to pass by the room and saw the fan wasn’t moving. I thought maybe one of the kids felt cold and turned it off. Upon getting closer I hear a slight whirring sound meaning it was on, just not functioning. And after turning it off I touched the back of the fan motor cover and it was burning hot!
I contacted the seller and she was completely surprised, telling me she had it in storage, and had turned it on before I picked it up to make sure it was working before giving it to me. She apologized profusely and told me to return it and take my money back.
A couple weeks later, after school while walking with the kids toward the local masjid for praying Zohr/Asr, I noticed another secondhand pedestal fan standing outside a small shop selling electronics and kitchen appliances. It was 55 tomans and looked like it was in decent condition. Although the shop was closed, the owner left a small sign with his number on it on the door. We contacted him and found out that there was a buyer who had expressed interest in the fan before us and even left a small deposit with him. However for the past three days the owner hadn’t been able to contact him. He told us that if the buyer still didn’t pick up the phone by the next day, we could get it.
Long story short, we didn’t get that fan either.
Sometimes kismat is a funny thing. There are things that just aren’t meant to come your way… and even when you do get it, thinking that it was meant for you, it goes away. At that moment when the owner told me “I’m sorry, but it’s gone,” I thanked him and had to smile a little. It just wasn’t meant to be. And as I sat watching the kids run and play before prayers, I thought about all the wonderful blessings we do have – a cooler that works, a pedestal fan that works, a home that keeps us safe from the burning sun. Sure, another fan would have been nice, but in retrospect we really didn’t need it.
One might say, well, just go buy a new one. And yes, we could have done that, and we are grateful that we are able to do that without any hardship. But knowing when to accept what comes your way is part of this faith. Personally, I take these small instances as signs that I should take a step back and reflect. About what I have, what I need, etc.
Alhamdulillah (praise be to God) for giving these beautiful moments where we can reflect on the things that matter and be thankful for all the blessings we have.