Sunday, October 20, 2013

EID DAY ONE: my Eid outfit, Omani shuwa in Muscat, and sunset in Shatti al Qurum

This Eid I decided to stay in Muscat. Partially due rebellion... I longed to punish those obscure family members who isolate me due to me not originating from their tribe and family---by depriving them of my daughter's presence. As my daughter is of their tribe, and blood, this is actually shocking, because how could I let her miss seeing all her little cousins, and getting Eidyia [money Omani children traditionally get on Eid] and eating all the traditional foods?!

Unthinkable, perhaps, but it was my husband's duty to inform the [more kindly/Islamic]others that the case of our disapearence was due mistreatment by a certain few.
But if I examine my motives deeper, perhaps it was simply out of a longing to have the freedom to do whatever I liked on the Eid, not bound by tradition. So what I am not Dhofari, or Bedouin? If I like their clothes, why can't I tailor that style of Omani dress... or God forbid, a Moroccan takchita, scarlet woman that I am... So what if I can't eat beef and rice for a week straight with the only other option being schwarma? So what if I have pasta or Jordanian lamb stew or a Palestinian chicken dish in between the mishakeek and the shuwa?
For certain, there was a substantial longing for something different, something other than sitting in a room alone being left with food and tv and children and not much else to do. So all I tailored this Eid was an abaya. I used suri silks in the sleeves, something from a region of Oman unrelated to my own, simply because I think their clothes are gorgeous. I didn't put any henna, although I love henna, but painted my nails candy colours instead. My purse added a little rock-star rebellion, being an unsuitably garish-look-at-me shade of hot pink, with sweet studs. The bracelets and ring were gold and purely traditional Omani, as let's not forget, I love this country and its traditions nonetheless.
My daughter and I woke up to the sound of men and boys calling people to wake up before the takbir (chanted for the Eid prayer) rang out. I took my time to dress her in an Omani dress, with its cute little kerchief, and she was happier than anything to be granted chips, spiced milk tea, and candies before breakfast. As soon as we were both dressed, I took a bag down out of the closet. A sparkly pink and gold bag, which contained her Eid gold bracelet and necklace, and new toys. So what she wouldn't get Eidiyia in the village? She didn't seem to care.
We played all day, took time to smell the flowers, kicked up sand and surf, saw new neighborhoods, and walked to the store to buy nuts, juices, and my friend--- she made us a delicious lamb stew for lunch. The next day was much of the same, with people cutting the meat for Eid sacrifice and preparing the shuwa (traditional Omani meat dish which is cooked over hot coals buried under the ground for a 1-2 days). So what if we wouldn't have  our own shuwa or see the al azwa (village traditional dances) I thought.
But when my husband returned from his duties of cutting the meat in his village, it turned out we would have an Eid with everything anyways, both Village-AND-Shatti-Girl. It began with him gifting us mishakeek (which is cubed and spiced meat on skewers, very delicious!).
Then we went to Kargeen restaurant in Madinat Sultan Qaboos. Non-smoking section, of course. Kargeen is the most adorable authentic little restaurant, which is done up with a lot of antiques and oriental decor.
We ordered a fruit cocktail for our little princess, and dried lime tea for ourselves (which is very Omani and I suggest you try it, although Omanis don't actually consider it to BE a tea).
Of course, my husband's plan was all along for me to have shuwa. I grew up eating goat or sheep shuwa as a child and the beef shuwa in his village just doesn't taste as good to me. Kargeen serves goat shuwa wrapped in lime and banana leaves for flavour, over a bed of rice with ghee (sooooo good, but oh so bad) and yemeni salsa on the side with a small dish of dates.
It was soooooooooooooo good. I am the world's slowest eater, serriously, and I think I finished mine before my husband did his. My daughter was also a fan. And I have never been able to get her to eat meat of any kind.
We should have had dessert because the cake at Kargeen is good, made from family recipes but I mean, we had to walk after that. The beach I grew up walking was within a short distance, so just in time for the sunset we made it to Jawarat al Shatti. Very reminiscent of bygone Shatti-girl days I kicked off my (Michael Kors) heels and strode along barefoot in the sand. Husband was having a father-daughter moment, so I enjoyed the black and grey silhouettes of the coconut trees lining the beach and burgeoning moon signalling the day's end.


My Own Fairytale said...

Gorgeous outfit and Jewellery!Masha'Allah.
Eid mobarak.


Anonymous said...

You made a good choice skipping your usually Eid routine. As the Arab proverb goes:

الباب اللي يجيب لك الريح سده واستريح

Umm Aaminah said...

That sounded amazing masha'Allah! You deserve to have an eid where YOU can actually enjoy yourself. Being shut in a room and no one talking to you for days... no thanks! Alhamdulillah for an understanding and loving husband!

Lulutiiiii said...

I LOVE YOUR ABAYAAH :O seems like you had an amazing eid alhamdulillah

Anonymous said...

Eid Mubarak, I hope you had a good one too!:)
Oh, how I understand your thoughts on this habibty... This is not nice of in laws at all. But remember, even ordinary girls, married everywhere in any religion get difficulties with in-laws. May Allah guide us all.

Anonymous said...

hi! sorry if this is a weird question but i'm wondering if you could help me out i am travelling to oman in december and want to know how hot (or cold) it'll be then.. i'll be in the jebel mountains and desert too and i heard it can get really cold there! do you think a thick jacket is enough or should i bring warmer things? thank you very much!

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

MY OWN FAIRYTALE: Eid Mubarak, thanks.

ANONYMOUS: I like my normal Eid but I needed a break. To be me.

UMM AMINAH: Thank you, sis. Your Eid looked so lovely in pics too.

ANON: Of course;). Eid Mubraka to you too. Ameen to that.

NASTY ANON: I did grow up in Oman. Check with my parents. I did help with orphans, check with my parents (though this blog doesn't go into that). I never pretended to be a prefect Muslim, I have anger issues, and have blogged about that before. And this blog isn't just written by me, but I know this post is, and you're addressing me, so go leave your nastiness somewhere else, like the blog I write alone not with anyone else. That friend who I had an issue with, ask her if I grew up in Oman why don't you? She visited the house I lived in, met my old friends I knew here. Whatever, Haters will hate because they're bored with their own lives. Why don't you do live your dream somewhere, and find where you belong? As long as it is not Oman I'll be happy. So glad to have left behind bogus fake bad Muslims like you;p/ Alhamdulilah.

Omani Princess (not Omani...yet) said...

Lulutiiii: thank you. Belated Eid mubarak to you.

Anon about the weather: As long as your bring a sweater and coast for the mountains you should be fine. I find a sleeping bag and sweater is enough for me if camping up there.