Sunday, 20 September 2009

Oman: Eid preparations

Although Ramadan has ended elsewhere in the region, Oman’s moon-sighting committee couldn’t find it last night and therefore announced that the first day of Eid will be on Monday. Nonetheless, Seeb market was crammed with shoppers this morning preparing for the traditional Eid feasts.

The streets were lined with piles of dried banana and palm leaves, sacks, piles of wood and the occasional refrigerated lorry dripping blood. Teenage boys sat behind rickety tables stacked with jars of baharat (mixed spice) and large tubs of sauce with contents that had settled into three different layers of tomato, oil and spices. The more enterprising stall holders peddled packets of skewers, tin foil, barbecues, charcoal and industrial quantities of tissues.
The market meat preparation area was packed with men wrestling lumps of meat and discarded animal components (full description not appropriate). I have always considered myself as being aware of cultural sensitivities when wielding a camera in such places and on such occasions, even when standing well back from the crowd. But once again managed I managed to offend someone, albeit another poorly educated teenager (similar incident last year at Seeb goat market). A retort in standard Arabic usually defuses the situation, but in this case I might just as well have spoken Martian.

4 comments:

Blewyn said...

Aha...were you the guy with a large camera wearing a bandanna (I think) in Nizwa goat market ?

Mr. Steve said...

Not me....(and what do you mean by 'large'?)

Blewyn said...

An SLR with a big lens....July 2008...?

Mr. Steve said...

I can't remember last week, yet alone July 2008....but the blog tells me we didn't go to Nizwa in July 08....I don't wear bandannas either....and I'm only average in the lens department....so, probably not me.