First of all Instagram. Texted Grandson today:
Me: I cannot get on Instagram. Password problem. I think I am not supposed to be on it right now. It is strange. Seems Allah does not want me there at the moment, I think. And if go back to it, then new identity.
Me: I love that you said Okay!! It was the perfect thing to say!! Perfect. You are great!
Then we texted about other things, I did some thinking and then wrote:
Me: On another topic I think we have a good relationship because we laugh together and we have the faith together.
He: Yes right.
Me: I am so happy that you agree!!!
Me: You are so cute and funny!!
He: Thanks madam.
So we are having fun – not seen each other for about a week but still laughing together via text. People here at the Rixos Resort Paradise want to meet him – some have but most have not.
Me: People here in the restaurant want to meet you.
Me: Perfect response.
I am beginning to shed my former life and just relax in Paradise. I shall speak of my new habits in a later blog. I am gaining an appreciation of many Middle Eastern customs and countries – the USA has no idea what is going on here – none whatsoever as the media is so prejudiced against Muslims and so ill-educated. I shall speak of many encounters with people of Saudi Arabia and how positive all of my contacts have been. How contrary to the stereotypes that I admittedly held before as a result of poor information. Meeting the most amazing people here – well, some are not so amazing (as well) – but the good does, by far, outweigh the bad. I have the sweetest, best and most profound interactions with the staff – management and staff are so aligned, work so well together, respect one another. It is a joy to see!!
But this blog is going to be a photo show. Some have been pictured on Instagram – the caption will have to be remembered because it cannot be retrieved. The first is one taken from my balcony yesterday morning. Caption was (as remembered): Photo from my balcony at sunrise. I said morning prayers and then read from the Qur’an – picking something at random. It was of the creation – the language is utterly beautiful. Inspirational beyond words.” I revealed the photograph to a staff member (PAS):
He: It is perfectly balanced. Your eye goes toward the sky with everything leading up to it.
Me: Thank you so much!! It feels like everything is pointing to the sky, toward the heavens and to Allah.
The Qur’an says of the creation.
- Allah, it is He who raised the heavens without any pillars that you can see.
It goes on to say:
- And it is he who spread on the earth, and set therein mountains standing firm and (flowing) rivers. And fruit of every kind in pairs, two and two. He draws the Night as a veil o’er the day. Behold!
That is sheer poetry, drawing the Night as a veil o’er the day – such a beautiful concept.
I then used my iPhone technology to turn the photograph into black and white. PAS reviewed this photo, saying.
He: That is beautiful. Your eye is drawn toward the sky which is white.
Me: Yes, thank you. Also you can see the reflection of the palm trees in the water, not as noticeable in color. It is so much fun to play with a photograph with today’s technology.
The third photograph was taken at sunset. During the day I had spoken with a Saudi woman, a physician, trained in Saudi Arabia. Have Westerners ever heard of such a thing?? Never!! She has been a family care physician for eight years, married but then divorced and is at the Rixos visiting accompanied by her sister and other family members. She told me of her custom – to pray at both sunrise and sunset. I prayed for the first time at sunset from my balcony and was able to capture the lights of the evening.
Then this morning, the cumulus clouds suddenly turned pink, multiplied, intensified and then turned back to white. It was stunning. There are not many, if any cumulus clouds in California, so it was a surprise – such a treat!
My random reading of the Qur’an brought new thoughts and revelations, to be revealed in a later blog.
The last photograph is a selfie taken at breakfast. It was sent to Grandson, with a text.
Me: I am now having breakfast and laughing! I am dressed as a Muslim today. Picture in a minute. Sent photo with caption: Me as a Muslim
He: Wow so lovely!
Me: Thank you! Grandson.
He: Looking cute
Me: And glamor. Oops glamorous
At this moment the door bell rang. It was a young man from the Philippines coming to refresh my mini bar with chips and iced tea. I explained that I was in bed blogging and showed him my blog.
He: I am speechless.
Me: Well I am not, fortunately. Hahahaha
Music from the pool is playing: Stand by Me. Honest, that song! Of course, I googled the lyrics, they are eloquent and so appropriate. Here they are:
When the night, has come
And the land is dark
And the moon, is the only, light we’ll see
No I won’t, be afraid
No I won’t, be afraid
Just as long, as you stand, stand by me
So darlin’, darlin’ stand, by me
Oh-oh stand by me
Oh stand, stand by me, stand by me
If the sky, that we look upon, should tumble and fall
Or the mountains, should crumble, to the sea
I won’t cry, I won’t cry, no-no-no I won’t shed a tear
Just as long, as you stand, by me
And darlin’, darlin’ stand, by me
Oh-oh-oh, stand, by me
Oh darling, stand by me, stand by me, stand by me
If the mountains should crumble to the sea
When the night, has come
And, and the land is dark
And the moon, is the only, only light we’ll see
So darlin’, darlin’ stand, by me, oh-oh stand by me
Oh darling, stand by me, stand by me
Whenever you’re in trouble won’t you stand, by me
Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh, stand by me, stand by me, stand by me
So darlin’, darlin’, stand, oh-oh, oo-oo, oh-oh
As long as I know I got you right here
Right here by my side
Come on, come on, stand, stand right here
Google, find and listen to the Ben E. King version. It is absolutely beautiful and so reassuring. I do believe that my New UAE Family will be standing by me, forever. It is because of the faith and many other factors, causing this hope, wish and perhaps certainty. As I concluded the Introduction to the book on the Tate Britain. “I weep, not tears of sorrow, but tears of joy!”