Today, we had a Moroccan celebration after school. Many of the children were dressed in traditional clothes along with festive hats and party shoes. During the celebration, I had my name written in Arabic by a man who does calligraphy. He also put "God bless her" at the bottom of my special souvenir of the event. I tried traditional cookies made of gum as in "gum arabic". They had an unusual taste, and a friend said to just pretend they were lemon flavored. I always seem to attract friends with vivid imaginations.
It was fun to hug many of my younger students as they were happy to see me there at the celebration. I had worn a "jellaba" for the event, so I fit right in as I wandered around sipping mint tea and munching non-lemon flavored cookies. The music was arabic and loud. The girls were all dancing, and the boys were all awkwardly standing around or running around. Except, some boys, as well as girls, were getting henna painted on their hands. There were several henna artists available...I guess instead of face painting.
I had just finished another day in art world; I had my classes do lions or pyramids, and I taught my 7th graders how to draw the face and the human body using shapes. It's interesting to see when the older students do break out of their usual drawing habits. I helped one student draw longer arms on her beautiful model type figure. I assured her that she was needing to move the model's hands further away from the waist area.
Back to the Moroccan celebration....
During the Moroccan celebration, a teacher came up to me and said a third grader had said she likes art the best of any subject and that I was her favorite teacher at the school. Thank you, Lord, for gifts of encouragement. I needed that today.
Speaking of Moroccan celebrations, next Wednesday is El Aid Kaber. It is a favorite holiday among muslims because every family slaughters a lamb, and children have plenty to eat. Rich relations give food to poor relations. I think all sorts of special cookies are made as well. It's one of their biggest, if not biggest holiday of the year.
Why slaughter a lamb? Well, they are thinking back to when Abraham started to sacrifice his son - they believe the son to be Ishmael. However, Islamics believe God provided a ram in the bushes for the sacrifice for Abraham's sins. Jews and Christians think it was Isaac that was almost sacrificed. Christians believe Jesus sacrificed His life to make restitution for our sins, so no lamb needs to be slaughtered at this point. That's where my faith lands.
Every family must have a lamb here...good ones go for $2,000 dirham or $250 US dollars. People beg, borrow or steal for this lamb; the end justifies the means. The lamb will die for the stealing sin soon enough. There is a lot of thievery during this week. We were even given a warning as we were leaving school for the weekend:
|Ending the week with great walk at Sunny Beach- of course!|
inter-campus missive: Just a quick note to remind you to be careful during the Aid period (a week ahead of El Aid) of theft and pick pockets. (Yikes!)
Now to have a quiet weekend, I hope. Must hold onto my purse! The Moroccan adventure continues!