I do not know where I would be without the Marin Jewish Community Center. That places absolutely spells community, it is so supportive, caring, involved – not just to me, of course, but to everyone and everybody. An abundance of kindness, an abundance of respect, an abundance of all things bright and beautiful. The antithesis of Tam Ridge Complex where I reside which has the same amenities but a totally different atmosphere.
It is interesting to explore the concept of community. Community is so lacking these days in the USA – it always was, not just Covid, although Covid is used as an excuse. The best definition of community is thus: a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals:. This was used in a sentence to illustrate the concept: The sense of community that organized religion can provide. But the sheer joy of the Center place is that it is ‘organized religion’ in a way but so accepting of other faith and creeds. This conversation with a male member of the community reveals this.
He: Happy New Year!
Me Happy New Year to you but I am not of the faith. I am a Muslim, a recent one, only October 20,2020. ‘
He: I am proud of you!
Me: Oh my goodness. What a wonderful thing to say, I am SO touched.
The applicable synonyms would be: brotherhood, sisterhood, fraternity, confraternity, sorority, colony, institution, order, body, circle, association, society, league; rare sodality. The synonym I prefer and seems most applicable is circle, Looking deeper into the meaning of sodality revealed this: The Latin word sodalis means “companion”, a sodality being an organization of companions or friends. The JCC does seem exactly like an organization of companions and friends. The people there are the companions and friends you would always love to have. I have gotten to know, a little better, a woman who helped me with my plastic sleeved arm who encouraged me on a personal matter.
She: Go for it!
This is a subsequent conversation.
Me: What is your work? What do you do for a living? I used to be a lawyer, working for the County.
She: I am the principal of the Korean School.
Me: My goodness, I did not even know there was a Korean school
She: Yes! It has been in existence for about twenty years, it is located nearby.
Me: Wow! How coincidental. I am watching Kim’s Convenience on Netflix.
She: I have never seen the show, heard of it, but never seen it.
Me: You must watch, it is so wondrously funny.
That conversation took place in the jacuzzi. Also there was a man who said that he was working with Pope Francis developing a program of socially responsible investing.
To be honest, I am not positive that this man is the real thing. Again Google weights in: “The Vatican’s economy is shrouded in secrecy, with some believing its financial numbers are more general than accurate. The Holy See is the governing body of the nation and generates money through donations; it then invests a portion of that money in stocks, bonds, and real estate. What is socially responsible investing. Socially responsible investing (SRI) is an investing strategy that aims to generate both social change and financial returns for an investor. Socially responsible investments can include companies making a positive sustainable or social impact, such as a solar energy company, and exclude those making a negative impact. The jacuzzi guy said that Dubai investors were insisting on oil investment and needs to be diverted from this. He attempted to illicit my help when learning of my connections to Dubai, even saying that I would be paid and could meet the Pope. But, for many reasons, it does not ring true when one knows the history of region, the recent goals and strategies of the Ruler of Dubai. I am able to, already make a powerful pitch to the Pope. I do love Rome, been to the Vatican but only saw the Pope in his Pope mobile. Besides, I am going to Dubai. How many places can I be at once?
Became decisive, dropping the UK from my itinerary, making reservations to stay in the same hotel for the duration of my stay. I will be in Dubai for almost three weeks. There will be so many things to do with Expo and all. Three weeks will probably not be enough time.
I return on October 31. I laughingly said to my neighbor.
Me: Yes, the witch shall return to these parts on Hallowe’en. But on Air Emeritus not on a broom. Brooms are too breezy – business class on Air Emeritus is SO SO comfortable and luxurious. Better than first class in any airplane I have ever flown first class upon. I shall arrive in Dubai most relaxed and rested.
But back to the Marin JCC. I told one woman that I was a Muslim
She: I hate the way they treat women.
Me: You are mistaken. Muslims treat women better than any faith. They are respected and protected, but at the same time considered to be equal to men.
She: No they are not,
Me: I am afraid that you are not informed. They are many examples of women in positions of power and women of Royalty who were their countries in spectacular ways.
The woman left but at least four other women, in the women’s locker room were totally supportive and agreed thoroughly with my interpretation.
My viewpoint is buttressed by this. The President of the U.A.E. spoke of female empowerment.
“Islam affords women their rightful status, and encourages them to work in all sectors, as long as they are afforded appropriate respect.” That is so important women should work in all sects as LONG AS THEY ARE AFFORDED APPROPRIATE RESPECT.” So women are both encouraged and protected – a standard so lacking in these United States. His Highness spoke of tolerance: “To treat every person, no matter what his creed or race, as a special soul, is a mark of Islam. Does that not say everything? That is what Islam is all about – not what the stupid lazy Western press portrays.
There are amazing Arab women. Do read about a shining star in the firmament. I”t is no secret that Her Highness Sheikha Latifa Bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum is a royal with cultural prowess. Spearheading a blend of artistic, educational, and technological activities in Dubai, she has marked unforgettable records and achievements. Through her post as Chairperson of the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, and member of the Dubai Council, she actively aspires to foster an environment of creative production in Dubai and place the city as the leading cultural center in the region.”
The article spoke more of her achievements. “Dubai Design Week was established under none other than HH Sheikha Latifa’s patronage. During the 2015 inaugural event celebrating regional and international design, the princess said it underlines Dubai Culture’s commitment to achieving the goals of Dubai Plan 2021 to establish Dubai as a city of happy, creative, and empowered people. “Hosting this flagship design event in Dubai defines our city’s credentials as a fast-emerging global design capital that inspires designers around the world, provides them a vibrant platform for showcasing their works, and fosters the next generation of design talent,” she said in a statement.”
“Through her role as Vice Chairman of the Emirates Literature Foundation and organizer of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, the Arab world’s largest celebration of the written and spoken word, Sheikha Latifa advocates for literacy and promotes the right to learn and sustain a culture of reading. She has also launched several initiatives to renovate and modernize Dubai’s public libraries.This accolade from the Arab Women Authority is awarded every four years and recognized the role the princess has played in reinvigorating Dubai’s cultural and creative sector and her support for innovative initiatives that enriched the local and regional cultural landscape.”
“The September issue of Vogue Arabia – traditionally the most anticipated and biggest of the year – is celebrating a serendipitous milestone. Marking the significant moment of our 50th issue in a year that also celebrates 50 years of the UAE is a cover like no other. HH Sheikha Latifa Bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, and daughter of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, against the backdrop of dawn in Dubai, stands as a powerful symbol of hope, purpose, and the beating heart of the UAE’s creative ecosystem.”
“In the interview with editor-in-chief Manuel Arnaut, HH Sheikha Latifa shares her plans and vision for Dubai and the post-Covid recovery of the cultural and creative sector, while also talking about the misconceptions around the role of Arab women in society, and what it’s like to be one of the few women in the Al Maktoum family with a public role. “Ensuring the happiness of the people of Dubai through culture and creativity and paving the way for people to create and share their own success stories is a passion I work towards – not a role or a job I do. My greatest wish is to share Dubai’s heritage, culture, and story with the world in the same way residents and visitors share theirs with us,” Her Highness says.”
As the article attests she is the daughter of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, The Ruler of Dubai. I understand she is also the mother of several beautiful children. It would be such a pleasure to meet her when I am in Dubai but who am I? Just an elderly woman born in Saskatchewan. I so love revealing this truth, being born in Saskatchewan . Do ot forget that a woman in the water aerobics class at the Marin JCC was also born in Saskatchewan. What is the likelihood of that.
Photographs will be of Alexis during her prior stay at the Dubai hotel of her choice. She is shown kissing a camel, which was an ambition not throughly realized due to a fall on the left knee on an excursion. So the camel is wooden, in the lobby of the hotel. It is not the same but at least there is no danger of SARS.