Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Final Photo Session of the Season

We visited one more house before noon.  After that, neighborhood families ate together, and then spent the rest of the day visiting family or...graveyards.

I was told that for a couple of days at the end of Ramazan, some nationals visit cemeteries.  I didn't get the full story, but I'm assuming it's to pray for relatives.

By the way, I know I have been saying "Ramazan" instead of "Ramadan," but they are they same thing.  "Ramazan" is just how our people say it in their language.

This last house had a LOT of relatives.  In fact, the lady who lives here wasn't even here at the time.  These were all of her daughters, nieces, and granddaughters.

And they were a photo-taking group!

This is just a small example of the amount of photo-taking that went on.

When we were all good and hot and seated in the sun/shade, the hostesses started really feeling bad because we were sweating so much.

The men were in an outside room with a swamp cooler.

One brave lady leaned in the men's room and asked if the guests (we ladies) could come in.

The men said, "Yes."

I went to the back of the room where Doug and Caleb were seated, but I only stayed about 2 minutes.  I realized quickly that I needed to sit at the front of the room, near the door, with the rest of the ladies.

Besides the Americans, four or 5 of the national ladies joined us in the room as well.

It was a fun, lively time, and we had quite the conversation about how much things cost us.

They were horrified when they found out how much we spent on "this" or "that," specifically the amount we paid to the tailors for the outfits we were wearing.  I think it's hard for them to understand that we Americans don't get the same rates or prices for things that they do.

It's very common to talk about money matters publicly, and I've repeatedly been told I pay too much rent.

First of all, rent is way lower than I would be paying in America, and secondly, it would have been very difficult to bargain a rent price the first week in the country when we knew no language.

Anyway, they started getting food ready for their family, and we knew it was time to leave.

Our two American families went our separate ways to eat lunch at our own houses.

It was such a full and rewarding day.  What a blessing to be invited into so many homes and meet so many people.  And even though it was the only day we got to celebrate the end of Ramazan, because the other two days they spend with family, it was well worth it.

Caleb went home with pockets of chocolates.

Most everyone had eaten so many snacks throughout the day that they weren't hungry, and I didn't have to cook lunch.

And after a long Ramazan season, many late nights in the bazaar, good conversations with neighbors, and our final hoorah, I took a much-needed nap.

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