Inshallah. This was one of the first words I learned when I moved to the UAE, it is probably the word I hear the most around here and I am pretty sure this is THE one word that can get my blood boiling instantly, as soon as it comes out of a person’s mouth.
Inshallah translates into English as ‘God willing’. In my understanding, this term should be one of those powerful things you say when you are faced with a challenging or very difficult situation and need extra strength to deal with it. Sort of like a prayer to call upon a blessing or a ‘little hand from above’.
Problem is the words YES and NO have been entirely replaced with Inshallah around here. Here are some of the conversations I have almost on a daily basis:
With a guy from the phone company:
- So, do you think you will be able to install my land line this week?
With a colleague from work:
- I’ll wait for you to send me your numbers this afternoon so I can add them to the report and work on the presentation.
With a customer service representative from a store:
- You said the furniture would be delivered to me by Monday and it is now Thursday. I need this here before the weekend.
Seriously?!?!? It drives me nuts! In the beginning I thought it was kind of nice, you know, like a polite thing people would say before actually committing to something. I was wrong. It’s just Inshallah. Period.
Everyone uses it for everything all the time and most of the time you just know there is no chance in hell of something happening when the word Inshallah is thrown in the mix.
Sometimes I get so frustrated I actually say: No, not Inshallah. I need to be able to make plans. I need specific dates and deadlines.
Guess what the answer is. Yes, you got it: Inshallah you will be able to.