Zaheer chacha

I was lucky enough to know a man who wrote the most amazing letters. He had a free subscription of Newspapers, Magazine, gift hampers, you name it, because of his letters. In his last days he was restricted to his bed moving around was a chore for him, somehow that didn’t get his spirits down. He was still connected to the outside world, more than you and I can ever be. He knew all the big guns, but he was never connected in the material sense, but rather on a more human level.

If he saw something good in the city he’d write a letter to the mayor, he’d write to the post master, the road worker and the cop for doing his duty in the scorching heat, he would write if he likes something, if he doesn’t. He’d write if he missed you or thought you needed straightening up. He believed everyone who did their job well needs to be recognized whether it be a politician or a maid everyone deserved to be respected for his work.

Him and I, we used to email each other and I was 15 back then, I think. I’d ask him about what career to choose, why we are here on this planet, and he would answer me patiently always. I’ve lost those emails somewhere and that’s one of my biggest regrets. I wish everyone could have a sitting with that man and share his wisdom; sadly he passed away too soon.

Letters, mere words and the man had a gift to connect with any human regardless of age. He’d talk to you about technology if you were into that kind of thing, business, banking politics and what color was nice this season. You could sit there for hours and he’d entertain you, in which he’d take ten minute breaks for his prayers. He had an alim degree and we never knew about it, humble to the core.

He had all these things and more, but the trait of his we could learn from was his respect for time. His own and others. If you invite him over at 7:00 pm he would be outside your house at 6:55pm and polite enough to not ring the bell. He would actually wait five minutes and ring the bell at the time when he was supposed to meet you.

We always seem to be in a hurry, always and we’re going nowhere. And we’re never there when and where ever we are supposed to be. Not on time anyways. Some things need to change.


Published by

Fahim Akhter

Fahim is a product manager with over 10 years of experience currently working as product head at MONT5. He focuses on user centric centric design, especially on brand, user experience and revenue product challenges. Prior to joining MONT5, Fahim's has worn multiple hats during his career from game production to product development but the emphasis has always been on creating unparalleled user experience and to help startups to make complex products more engaging. He has worked on diversified portfolio of startups including games, apps, education and e-commerce with product reach of 10M users across the globe. Fahim is a computer science graduate from FAST Islamabad. He volunteers for education and mentors students and startups, to help them grow and drive innovation.

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