Daylight Savings Time ends, and, wow, could she use a savior.

By now, Leila was pretty much settled into her school schedule; wake up at fajr and pray and read some Qur’an and crash for another hour; tumble out of bed and get dressed and do her hopefully-day-long-wudu; spread some cream cheese onto a bagel and wrap it up for later, to eat on campus around lunch time. When she got to campus, it was onto the daily classes, to the classrooms she forgot the room number of, ’cause now she found them by landmark. Get out by 1:00, head to the Student Center to pray, and then to the library to study for a bit. And on and on.

By her last afternoon class on College Avenue, Leila would have had her lunch and learned her vocabulary for Arabic, prayed asr and walked to her seat a few minutes late. Right after class, she’d pray maghrib before heading home in time for dinner, a nap, and the rest of the night.

Then comes November 3rd, the clock turns, and everything is all over the place.

On Sunday morning, her mom shakes her awake for fajr at a different time than her alarm, and she’s totally confused as to why before she remembers.

On Monday, she locks herself down in Alexander, away from the windows so there’s no being distracted by the trees or the rain or whatever it is that College Ave has to offer. By the time she emerges upstairs, it’s pitch black—she was expecting a painted sunset—and she nearly trips over herself in running to a prayer room, and God, please accept this, because when she bites her lip and looks up the time for sunset—well, she winces.

On Tuesday, Leila scrutinizes a time table with her classes and the prayer times on it, nods to herself and sets up a schedule so she won’t miss anything. She’ll have to leave in the middle of one of her electives for maghrib, but what’s more important, a minor inconvenience  she can explain to the professor before class starts, or the keys to Heaven?

So by Wednesday, she’s totally settled into the new flow of things, except that in the twenty minute squeeze that she was going to pray in between classes she didn’t expect the guys in the DCC’s prayer room to be all the way against the back wall. She bites her lip and wonders if she should wait for them to finish—but, no, checking her phone, she decides that’ll be cutting it too close, and she doesn’t want to rush through her appointment with God, and this time she can take out her on-the-go prayer rug and find herself a corner, like she did last year.

When she’s done, she has to make a run for Loree, and nearly bumps into someone when she yanks the classroom door open. A classmate looks at her weirdly when she settles in her chair, her breathing off. She quickly tucks some hair back into her hijabthen looks at the clock on the wall.

Just in time!


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