Thursday, September 10, 2009

Getting in Touch with my Muslim Side

The other day Mom asked me if I was interested in going to visit a mosque.

Well actually, Adam and I were watching TV and he checked his email on his iTouch and saw Mom had sent both of us emails. It was a very cryptic email about visiting a mosque. I almost felt like it would be set to self destruct when I finished reading it. It also told us to be there at 5:54. That sounds rather precise! And cryptic. Did I mention that I thought the email was cryptic?

So I called and found out she didn't mean to be cryptic and it really started at 5:45. Much more normal.

Our church does a lot of neat activities and a lot of times I don't learn more about them because I think I am too busy. Apparently when Mom was teaching a CPR class to the staff this week, one of the deacons mentioned this interfaith meeting. This week for the month of Ramadan the local mosque was hosting a gathering to learn a little about the Muslim faith and break fast (Iftar) with the community. Mom invited me to go with her and Dad and a few others from my church and because I had nothing better to do (lie-- I have lots to do, but it sounded interesting) I said, "Yes". Adam wanted to go, however, he ended up having to work.

It was VERY interesting and I learned a little bit. They host this event every year and there were local politicians and church leaders there. I also got some brochures and stuff that they passed around and even my own copy of the Qur'an (Koran) to put on my bookshelf. I found it even more interesting because I saw this culture first hand when I visited Erin in Morocco. Obviously I wasn't fasting today (I would be a very crabby teacher if I had to fast), but it was still neat to break fast with the Muslim members of the community.

Hey, I just noticed "breakfast" and is the words "break fast" put together. I wonder if that is where that word is derived from? It is! Look at that!

I digress....

This is a picture of the sun today because today was hot. Today was summer. There was no summer during summer, but it found its way here today. I loved it. But then I didn't love it when I was wearing long sleeves and long pants and shoes (GASP! SHOES IN SEPTEMBER??? Flip Flops are a MUST until November!!!). But all I could think of was my dress code in Morocco and I tried to be conservative. I did, however, let the outline of my butt show. But there were a lot of women there in short sleeves and regular clothes, so I needn't have worried!

There was A LOT of food! First there were figs (or dates?) to break fast and some other food that they didn't tell us what it was but I didn't know what was in it so I didn't eat it. But I ate the date (fig?). Then we had the real dinner (after the fake dinner) and this is what was served.
I ate bread.

Oh yeah. And this was another option.

It was very meat-filled.

But the bread was yummy!

Luckily my friends from church didn't think I was too odd when I asked to take pictures of their food!

One of the speakers.

And we each got one of these before we left. Figs...Dates?
I love a good good bag!

Of course I have to make a plug for Sister-Erin's project to build a Women's Community Center in her village. She is doing amazing things and has collected half of the funds necessary to complete this project. Let's work on getting the other half. Please forward on this info to family and friends and help these women!

Click here to go to the Peace Corps website and learn more!