Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Being asked for my ID by a corrupt/creepy ROP guy

I was so angry, but then, the words of the Indian men who worked at the cafeteria, caused me to pause for thought, and made me take a vow to myself. "May God make all poor women ugly, and all rich women beautiful." Strange it was, a thing for them to say, given the situation, so I had to think, what had this to do with me and what they had just witnessed?

The day was one for me to recover from working all the weekend. I stayed home to relax, but alas, had housework to do, so I wasn't wearing my best. Also, my foot was broken, so I was wearing rubber flip-flops (also great for mopping the floors). So when I was hungry, I was too tired to cook, so I set down the street to the coffee shop near my house wearing those same flip flops. Before leaving the house I tossed on an abaya, and a house scarf (coloured, patterned, long, and overly modest in length, covering all my body to my hips). I wore no makeup, no jewelry save my wedding band, and only my hands, and face were showing.

At the cafeteria I ordered my meal. I usually would wait in the little household goods store nextdoor while I waited for my order, but it wasn't open yet that early, and it was beyond hot out, I hid inside behind the pop machines at a quiet table.

Inside comes a plain-clothed young Omani male, just a little taller than myself, and boyish looking, and he 'salaams' me.

I reply underbreath so he can't hear, for Muslims have to reply to a greeting, but Omani dudes tend to take that as flirting so underbreath it comes.

I take it he knows the Indians or is the son of the owner as he walks straight back inside. When he comes back out he sits down beside me and starts to be all flirty in Arabic. I ignore him, and I know, I should get up, but the Westerner in me, is like, I was here first, you leave ME alone.

I tell him I don't want to talk and don't speak Arabic in Arabic (crappy Arabic that has no grammer).

He tells me I must be Lebanese and am lying. I am like, no, I am [insert nationality] and he pops out his ROP ID card and asks me for my ID.

I am so mad at this point, I could hit him. I have my id but I tell him I don't. I say it is in my 'beit' and I just came here to get food and leave. I told him my husband is Omani, and I am from such and such country, and so there is no 'mishkila' and he should leave me alone.

The Indians are watching, feeling sorry for me.

Legally, he can only ask for my ID if I am at a roadblock, or working. As a customer, he has no right, but I wouldn't be so pissed if I didn't know him to be squeezy, by his trying to flirt BEFORE flashing the id and asking for mine.

I could get him fired if I took his ID number, if he but knew that.

He insists I am lying and should go with him, so I wave him away like he's a fly and tell him I am going to eat, and if he wants to sit outside my house until my husband comes home, he can do that, but that won't be good for him.

He eventually leaves me and I roiling, boiling, broiling, over-flowing mad.

He thought I was a family-less housemaid or something, and I could see him taking advantage of some poor scared girl who doesn't know her rights or have someone to defend her.

Then the Indians made their dua. And after a while it made sense, for people like that creep will always take advantage of the situations of women who are poor or alone, and those who are rich will not know if people want their money or station, to take advantage of them elsewise.

It also makes me so deeply, horribly sad, that people such as that exist at all, because I could not see myself ever taking advantage of the weak state of another human being so utterly, and awfully. May the next time I meet that creep, I be wearing Louboutins in place of rubber flip flops, and be beside those he fears, ameen. May he get what he deserves, ameen. May he never hurt or take advantage of another human being, ameen. I hope he knows the fear and shame of those he'd oppress, ameen, else change and make right, though that I doubt.


Anonymous said...

A Lebanese housemaid? Seriously?

Anonymous said...

The ROP guy was obviously doing his job, detecting prostitutes on street.

Your attire and attitude that you describe yourself are the hallmark of Lebanese and Moroccan prostitutes in Oman.

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

Anon: I don't look Lebanese at all... he was just a creep.

Anon no 2: Flirting with women is doing his job? And I was dressed like Omani housewive and very modestly (all my Omani inlaws dress like that, maybe not flip flops but I had broken toe!!!). I saw some of the prostitutes in Oman and they had skin tight abayas or skinny jeans. They also don't hide, or ask men to leave them alone.

My attitude is, guy was squeezy, and probably sleeps with prostitutes in exchange for not arresting them. Trust me, he was a creep. He also isn't allowed to ask anyone for their id card unless they are a. working, or b. committing a crime. Waiting for take-out while female isn't a crime in Oman, now is it?

Anonymous said...

What, Lebanese prostitutes? Seriously, some people can be so small minded in this country. Anyone who is slightly more liberal in their attire or attitudes is considered to be a prostitute? That view is wrong.

Muslimah Delights said...

Anon - a loose abaya and large scarf is hardly the attire of a prostitute. Some men are just slime balls and wish all women pander to their desires.

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

Anon #3: I know right???? I have seen. like highly, highly expensive Lebanese escorts in Dubai, but in Oman, never.... I usually see very Asian women prostitutes or Moroccan/Syrian women who were brought her under falze pretenses like waitress and then forced into the sex trade... but reallllllly, the dude was just a creep.

I bet he thinks any woman who does wear jeans is easy, if he thinks a girl in a housedress, loose abaya, and hip length khimar is a hooker, gawd.....

Muslimah Delights: he thought I was a housemaid... who could be scared into doing what he wanted. Lebanese is because of being white I guess....

Anonymous said...

I know his type. Total slimeballs.. yuck. They think anyone non-Khaliji is a whore or has a price.

The Duncan Adventures said...

That is really sad to hear he would try and take advantage of a lone female. I'm glad that you have the savvy to tell him to beat it and get rid of him.

Anonymous said...

The only answer to all this is Regulated Prostn .... Your Govt should have given a thought before making all Massage places "Men do for Men" .... Soon these men will be at your Door .... Better Dress up nicely .... Do I need to remind you of the Population share of those Omani men that are Technically young .... and hey - Not all can afford a trip to Thailand .... Have you seen how much a seat on the flight costs during Eid .... i guess that's the only time when they have a little money left with them ... Perhaps its because of the Generous Banks that waive their installment for a loan they availed ...

The Blue Collar guy

Anonymous said...

First, I'd like to say I find your blog interesting and generally, I like it. BUT this post immediately struck me as a sly/not-so-sly, somewhat shameless bit of bragging, which some of your other posts do too. Might want to watch that. It's not that I don't believe the story. I have had similar things happen to me. However, it happens to all women, whether normal looking to beautiful, and adding and emphasising the bit about what the Indian guys said. The whole story could have been told without it, including your sympathetic comments for poor women. Creepy Arab men / police officers are nothing new in the Gulf. It really seems to me that your point in this story was to let us know how beautiful you are - even in crappy clothes and no makeup. ;) Sorry, but I tell it like I see it.

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

The |Duncan Adventures: I wish there were less creeps:(

Anon dude: This is a satiracal comment?

Anon: LOL, sorry, totally did not mean it that way. Their comment (the INdian men) didn't strike me that way at all. They meant, if women were poor, it be better that men find them totally unattractive, not that I am overwhelmingly awesome;p. Sorry, I don't mean to come across that way at all. It was their comment that made me think about housemaids you know... without relatives here in the country to defend them and not knowing the laws ect... Not really about myself. I didn't see it the way you read it.

blah blah said...

ugh. I can totally relate to this. Although, it wasn't any shady cop, but creepy Omani guys who thinks its ok to trail behind you at malls/parks.

A part of me really wishes you had reported him. This needs to be addressed and dealt with.

blah blah said...

hello. I, for one wish you had reported the policeman. Though that might make your life difficult as as expat. I have faced many situations like this. At this point. i feel like just confronting these creeps aren't enough. It needs to be addressed in Public (like what the Indian media is doing now).