If I want to make my mother proud, I might as well request a benefit again.

I think getting up early is terrible since I was little. I always cried when I had to get out of bed. My father works as an electrician at the municipality of Aleppo. He always has to get up at 6 am, because all employees are picked up with a municipal bus. My mother always used my father as an example: “You have to study, you don’t have to get up early, like your father.” In Syria, the boss may sleep late, because yes, he is the boss. picked up by a driver Workers are picked up early, because before that bus has passed all employees in the city, you are an hour and a half further.

I succeeded in studying, I became a lawyer. I could only enjoy it for six months, then I had to flee the war. In the Netherlands, early risers already started in the asylum seekers’ center. We had to stand in line at 7 am, otherwise you would not have breakfast. I soon found out that people in the Netherlands love getting up early. The roads are not full at 6 am with poor people being picked up by an employer, but by people who do have a good job. I am now quite advanced in my higher professional education product design course, with an internship at an architectural firm. The boss is always the first person at work here. At the Aldi I am branch manager one day a week. Just because I am the boss, I have to be the first. Well, the higher up I go in the Netherlands, the fewer morning hours I can lie in my bed. The only people who can sleep late are the people who have no work. If I want to make my mother proud, I might as well request a benefit again. Then I can call her at ten o’clock in the morning, from my bed.

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