Me And My Brick Lane: Part Two

From Part ONE, the reflection of memory continues.

Disadvantage Bengali Struggle, the Nightmare, and Race attacked. However, every day hearing the word “Paki go back to your own country”, the Anti Racist Movement was the training point that changed lives into a land of opportunity and hopes both politically and economically; those who came to the UK from the mid-’80s do not have an understanding or clue about the past.

 Apart from our father’s generation, the younger generation came to the UK late sixties without families. After Bangladesh became independent from Pakistan, our generation started coming to the UK in 1972. Since our arrival, many people have kept coming and bringing clothes for our family, surprising us, and giving us cash. 

So, on our arrival in London (Babylon)and slowly colour of the dream started to change and worry; it kept coming to mind where came to nowβ€”not being allowed to go out for five days where a three-bedroom flat and ten people living under such overcrowding conditions, my father, mother and sister in a room, Rashid father, mother, Rashid and his baby brother in a room plus their relative me and Rashid causing Monir living a room, getting worried about the racist attacks faced by the people constantly either at their building or at the streets. So, it is impossible to keep ourselves locked in a house where freedom is a lifestyle in Bangladesh.

However, our father’s generation was uneducated. However, they have taught us to follow the local culture and respect the laws and morality. So moral values were very high is not excepted by those who started coming to the UK mid-80 and onward educated from Bangladesh. Also, the most exciting issue was that in this country, different people visiting and from an area of Sylhet living together and sharing one house plus cooking and eating together; that was so amusing; also, regularly visiting Harry Shop corner of Brick Lane and Quaker Street to buy sweets that and were most exciting part. 

We Stayed at the Wheler House for over two months but got bullied and spitting and kicked by five-six brothers and sisters living on the first floor on at least nine or ten occasions. 

Once the most exciting part was mother started screaming and crying from the top floor of the building where five-six white racists attacked Abdul Hakim, who used the live first part of Wheler House mother thought it was her son but later realized that it was someone else, Abdul Hakim both were involved with Bangladesh Youth Front BYF in 1978 and became a close friend of mine later. He was bitten up many times and still has many marks and scars on his face and body. Our parents did not share many things about our living conditions, overcrowding, and cultural atmosphere. Still, she tried to keep us motivated and happy without sharing. Father bought a GLC flat behind Hackney Road, Children Hospital, Croft House, Code Street, London E2.

We went to the Robert Montefiore School sometime end of September 1973. Initially met Shopon Bhai, son of the former first Bengali Labour Party Elected Cllr in Tower Hamlets Ashik Ali. Shopon Bhai helped us with interpreting at the school administration office. After admission, they called the first person who came to take care of Abdul Hakim into our class. The school admin office has given the paper in hand with the course and group details. When Hakim saw such a piece, he changed the English as Foreign Language (EFL) group from three to two and set me up with his group; I was worried, but Hakim told me there would not be a problem. Nevertheless, unfortunately, the school atmosphere was not that good either. 

We regularly get insulted and bullied or even surrounded by numbers asking, “give money”, and if we do not give or refuse to give, we get bitten up, plus taking money from our pockets by white and some black, one Bengali mix-parenting and one Sikh boy (Peter Singh) senior at the school. The point that keeps coming to mind underprivileged is receiving the site’s end of our lives. So, the disadvantaged situation became the odd obstacle in our lives. So, some school activities of culture will be discussing the next part.

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