Sisters Amina Sibtain, partner at Fitfibre, and Zara Sibtain, Coordinator of Parent and Family Programs at William & Mary College, talk to us about the love they share, as well as their crazy childhood memories
What is your first memory of each other?
Amina: She is the youngest so it was easy to coerce her into doing things. I remember making her wear a lehnga, draping dupattas all over, and doing mehndi dances while a doll was her make-belief groom.
Zara: Our parents enrolled us in karate lessons when we were little, so that we would stay out of trouble. The two of us would happily go to the classes but instead of participating, we would stand on the side and drink water. It’s safe to say we both never advanced from white belt!
What is the craziest thing you have done together?
Amina: Once we decided to jump on Zara’s bed and it broke, which led to our mother punishing her by making her sleep on a mattress on the floor for a month — I obviously escaped the situation effortlessly and without punishment.
Zara: Our eldest sister was obsessed with The Backstreet Boys (BSB) when we were younger. All three of us shared a room, and she had put up posters of BSB all over the room. Amina and I both hated the band and one day we decided to vandalise her posters and draw all over them, needless to say, it did not go down well.
What did you get punished for the most as a child?
Amina: I was always super-melodramatic about my schoolwork and tests, and frankly my parents were over that very early on in my life. Also, I’ve always been a picky eater with a small appetite, which gets me into trouble till today.
Zara: I always got in trouble because I was not good at anything school related, and miss-goody-two-shoes over here always had her work done and got straight A’s without even trying.
If you could only wear one piece of clothing for the rest of your life, from the others closet, what would it be?
Amina: This is not really a clothing item, but I want her snuggie!
Zara: Without a doubt her shoes. She is a shoe fanatic and I wish my shoe closet looked like hers. If I had to choose one pair I would pick her gold and silver strappy Gucci heels. They are super-cute and versatile.
If you could swap places with each other, what’s the first thing you would do?
Amina: Use her savings and go on a shopping spree.
Zara: She owns these hideous pink sheep pyjamas, which she’s had for over a decade now. It’s about time they go! After I throw those out, I would take her poems and get them published.
What is the one thing you love about your sister?
Amina: She knows who she is and stands up for what she believes in — it can sometimes be extremely frustrating as well.
Zara: Her sense of humour. She thinks she’s the funniest person she has ever met, and I hate to boost her ego but she is really funny. Also her loyalty — she is always there when I need her, and is the most loyal and sincere person I know.
If you are fighting with each other, how do you make up?
Amina: We never fight, it’s mostly Zara lecturing me while I listen obediently and end up doing the exact opposite.
Zara: We don’t really fight. Usually she just sits and stares at me till I laugh!
What is the one secret talent your sister has, that you wish you had too?
Amina: Being financially responsible — I need to acquire this talent of hers as soon as possible!
Zara: I’m not sure if this is a secret, but her ability to express through poetry.
Describe your sister in three words:
Amina: Responsible, loving and warm.
Zara: Hilarious, loyal and dedicated.
Which fictional character is your sister most like?
Amina: Rafiki from The Lion King; he’s full of wisdom and Zara loved imitating monkeys as a child.
Zara: I don’t know why but she reminds me of Daffy Duck.
How are your personalities similar?
Amina: Neither of us have a short temper, which comes in handy with our family because our parents and eldest sister are very short tempered.
Zara: We let loose, have fun and don’t take ourselves too seriously, yet somehow she always manages to take it one step too far.
I can’t live without my sister because…
Amina: Someone has to give me the side eye when I’m discussing my insane and impractical life plans. Also, she’s my best friend and mother rolled into one very tiny package.
Zara: She’s my best friend, and of course because we would have no one to make fun of at family gatherings.