Disclaimer: This is the first blog post where I did not come up with the title. Hope you enjoy the post!
I had a rather interesting night with some great friends of mine earlier this week. It was definitely quite an experience I will never forget and I hope it is something we get the chance to do again. We had the chance to have a semi Muslim experience.
A friend of a friend (yep, that is seriously the best way to explain it), it from the Middle East and is Muslim. I don't know how he got conned into cooked for us, but I am really glad he did. I wasn't really sure what to expect as far as the food was concerned, but I did know I was going to have a wonderful time with my friends...and a wonderful time was had by all.
The meal was pretty basic. Like I said, I didn't know what to expect - something elaborate or something simple. What I got was something simple that was absolutely delicious. When trying new stuff, I try not to be rude, but there was one dish I simply couldn't eat. There was a dish made just of yogurt and cucumbers. Ok, so here is my weird deal about both items - I can eat Yoplait Whips Yogurt (but not regular yogurt) and I also love pickles, but I won't eat cucumbers. There was baked chicken with great seasoning. Seriously, it was the hugest thing of rice I had ever seen. There was something he called tomato salad, but it was just actually sliced tomatoes. To top it all off, there was bread. You can see the meal in the photo to the left.
We ended up having tea after our meal. I've been trying really hard to drink water most of the day, but I wanted to try this tea. Since my tea is usually green tea sweetened with stevia and honey, I was a little wary of just trying this tea with less stevia and no honey...and it definitely wasn't green. Again, I was pleasantly surprised.
Then came the most interesting part of the night - the hookah. So, I told one of my friends about it and he said, "a bong"? I had to quickly clear that up! The flavor was mint and the smell was great.
I have to admit, that was pretty fun - just hanging around, enjoying each other, and listening to the stories of a person from a land so far away. That's the thing though - after hearing him talk, his home doesn't seem that far away.
I was in complete awe of his educational journey and how he ended up in the United States. It made me so much more thankful for the opportunities I've had right here. It made me feel great that I did not have to leave where I was born to get, what some perceive, a better education.
I think the thing that was most amazing to me was that he spoke English as if he had lived her all his life, but with an accent. However, he only spoke an ounce of English when he arrived - yes, no, and thank you! In such a short amount of time, he has managed to speak the language better than some people who have lived her all their lives. As for me, I speak English and Southern.
Here's what I've learned from this experience - it is so important to talk to people. You can learn so much from people if you just take the opportunity to sit down, talk, and do a lot of listening. You might not be so much different than you think.