travel/landmarks

Just a Keepsake from Saudi

Hubby is currently in Riyadh. He has been going back and forth to the Middle East for several months now. As he always does, he brings home tokens for our collection. He prefers metal plates but if he doesn’t find any, he settles for something that would aptly symbolize the place. This miniature camel was actually a gift.

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If he has his way, he wouldn’t want to go back to Riyadh anymore:-). There is nothing for him to do. Even cinemas are actually forbidden in Saudi. The authorities believe that this will lead to the mixing of the sexes, which is a taboo in the country. Even in restaurants, males and females go to separate areas. How do citizens watch movies there? They could watch DVDs and have cable channels, right?

This camel will be the closest I could ever have of Riyadh. I couldn’t go there and I would not want to. Women could not go out unescorted by a male. Males and females eat separately unless you’re with your family and you go to the designated area for families. Must we always carry a proof that we are married for fear of being detained? And I will always be anxious whether I will be violating a religious law. I wouldn’t want to spend a day in jail just because…

Oh well, who are we to judge whether a culture or a country is more superior than another? The world is so vast and varied. We just need to respect each other’s culture. That being said, “if you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen”.


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