On two consecutive nights, Krista and I were invited to break the fast with Moroccan families. I've been making a sort of half-assed attempt at fasting in order to empathize and understand why everybody starts fighting in the street in the late afternoon. I did four or five days of fake-fasting (drinking water, but not eating during daylight hours), and Krista did a straight week in a row. So, anyway, breaking the fast with somebody is a very nice thing- you've both been suffering all day, and it's finally time to enjoy a few calories. At both houses, we sat down to tables heaping with different kinds of food- fish, soup, juice, salads, dates, sweets, meats, bread, tea, and so on. The mother or oldest daughter of the household had spent all day putting together this awesome spread- while they're fasting all the while. I can't imagine preparing food in a hot kitchen all day long without any water at all. Being a good host is important in Islam, and especially important during Ramadan. People who serve food to foreigners/children or prepare food get extra, bonus-points in the Muslim calculator. The second night in particular, I gorged myself and have never felt so full in my life- I wallowed around like a beached walrus or elephant seal for an hour and a half before stumbling home to my turkish toilet.
On the second night, after breaking the fast, we were treated to a one-sided theological discussion. Apparently, there is only one God because if there were more than one, they would fight. One would want sun and the other would want rain. That's why it doesn't make any sense that Jesus would be the son of God. I remain skeptical. I have seen zero critical analysis in religious discussions while here. This kind of weak argumentation is all there is. It's no good analyzing the Quran because it is supposed to have come directly from God, by divine revelation, or something like that. It's impossible to have any sort of religious conversation with somebody who is unmoved by reasoning.
We were given the family tree of humankind- generation by generation from Adam. Since it says so in the Book, it can't be any other way. There is no point whatsoever to any and all religious discussions, and, consequently, it's best to avoid them whenever possible. Unfortunately, they are often shoved in your face, in this case, while the wife, who had labored to prepare all the food, squirmed uncomfortably. Intolerance is a bitch. And I'm still wondering what tolerance of the intolerant would look like.
The ugly-here are some ugly pictures from summer camp in Midelt
|center of town, all the campers|
|typical small street|
|my team. The kid holding the flag is the one who liked torturing the guy with downsyndrome.|
|apples and storks|
|sleeping it off|
|kids on horses|
|smallest mul-hamar ever (donkey owner); and girl adjusting her pants|
|kid is like four, doesn't stop the campers from bothering him|
|krista and others on horses|
|pro-Hamas, anti-Semitic dance recital|
|same as above|