I have a secret. I have been wearing my pajamas for two days, day and night 24 hours a day. Led an active life, for example visited an amazing railroad museum last evening and then to a casual dinner at a fast food restaurant. It was delicious -chicken wrap and pomegranate juice, The chicken was, of course, halal as this is a Muslim country. THE Muslim country. Vast wealth is expended by the Saudi Government to preserve and protect the heritage and presence of the Prophet Mohammed (Peace be Upon Him). The West has absolutely no idea of what goes on in this hallowed place. I have decided that the reporters who speak of Saudi Arabia in disparaging terms have never been here, probably could not find it on a map. The tales they tell are written to please their editors and the moguls who control the traditional media. Instagram is no better (perhaps worse), anonymous inflammatory posts, stories and reels depicting falsehoods and events that never occurred. The so-called Day of the Dead being the prime example.
But back to my pajamas. I can wear pajamas for days and days because I wear an abaya – I have two black abayas – one purchased at the Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, the other from Amazon in the USA. These abayas cover me from feet to neck. Next the hijabs cover my hair, which is white and styled expertly by Tammy of Ricci’s in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Although my hair is almost magnificent, it is not necessary. Do remember from my hijab wearing days in North America having this conversation with women, who had messy ‘bad hair’.
Me: The advantage of being a Muslim woman is that you cover your hair and you do not have to wear worry about your hair.
She: I don’t worry about my hair.
Me: (secretly) It shows.
During my hijab wearing days my hair was cut very short, simply because, as it seemed silly to have hair that was all covered up, particularly when living in a hot climate. After my return to Edmonton decided to stop wearing a hijab – growing my hair in the cold climate. But here in Saudi Arabia the culture (not the Islamic faith) dictates the wearing of a hijab. I have many scarves, brought them with me – so all is well. I have been wearing a face mask rather than the nojeb because it was impossible to breathe or to eat. But wearing it gave me a great sense of security – I became an anonymous observer of life, no need to do anything but listen, observe humanity twisting and turning about, then silently learn about it. It provides the ultimate of protection – I felt almost invincible.
The meaning of invincible is too powerful to be defeated or overcome. The synonyms will make you feel strong merely by reading them: indestructible, unconquerable, unbeatable, indomitable, unassailable; unyielding, unflinching, unbending, unshakeable, indefatigable, dauntless; impregnable, inviolable, secure, safe.
I felt impregnable, indomitable and unconquerable strolling about. No one knew I was different than they were – I could have been a Saudi woman, not a Canadian one who lived in the USA most of her life, returning to her native land, Canada only months before. Of course, everyone asks me, when not wearing my noqueb the following question:
They: Where are you from?
Me: Canada but it seems so strange saying that as I lived most of my life in the USA. Came back to Edmonton after a fifty five year absence.
It is totally amazing that I am here in Saudi Arabia at this absolutely momentous time. Why is this so momentous?: you ask. This from a headline found in Google News: “China’s President Xi Jinping said relations between the People’s Republic of China and Arab countries witnessed great developments, as the two sides established strategic partnership relations and joint development for a better future following the Inaugural Chinese-Arab summit in Saudi Arabia, the official Saudi press agency reported on Friday. The summit worked to strengthen efforts to confront the food, energy, and climate crises, and voiced its commitment to find political solutions to thorny issues and to maintain peace and security in the region, Xi said in his closing speech at the summit.”
In a very strange way this has a direct impact on me. Friday I travel to Riyadh, had heard of traffic jams as was concerned as I, like most people on earth, hate traffic jams. I expressed my concern to the CEO of eJourney who is planning my trip to Riyadh. It is a diversion from the usual eJourney Umrah schedule offered others. This from our text conversation
Me: Understand that Riyadh is a rather a mess with security because of the visit of Xi Jimping – traffic jams are all over the place. It is an historical trip that may change the history of the world and I was there.
He: The traffic chaos should end very soon.
Me: Roads are cleared for Sheikha Fatimah Hahaha
He: Absolutely! MBS will order another road closure for Sheikha Fatima
Me: Thank you! I shall be Cleopatra off to meet Antony. Who do you have in mind for Antony. Can I pick from the many choices you have made for me? Maybe MBS? Hmmmm
(He responded with a laughing emoji)
Me: Your response tells me that you are not taking me seriously. I wonder why?
He: I took it as a joke because Initially. But lets stop texting now until we meet in Riyadh. Inshallah
Me: Looking forward to meeting you soon.
So as you can see there is a great deal going on at the moment. I am very happy at my hotel here in Medina, the Shahd Al Madinah. Pictured will be a special treat from the manager. Then the most strange occurrence took place. Yesterday I peered out my window, thinking:
Me: This hotel is very well refurbished but these windows are so dirty.
During the evening a hotel memo arrived, with the following message:
“We would like to inform you that there will be a periodic maintenance work going to take place during day time to clean the external facade of the hotel building and for the valued privacy of our guests, we kindly ask you to close the window curtains in the event of seeing any maintenance workers outside your room window to have more privacy.”
What did I do next? I closed the window curtains. Laughingly, remembering a similar occurrence at my apartment building in Edmonton about six weeks ago. I emailed M.A.N, the awesome manager of the building.
Me: I got your announcement about the window cleaning today. But it came a little late. For some reason my windows were cleaned yesterday. I about died when I looked up from my bed and saw a man outside my sixteen floor window. I initially thought Superman had arrived. But I went over, opened the window and had a nice chat. He owned the company. Great this was done at this moment in time as winter is not quite here yet.
Winter came about two days later. Impossible to clean windows when winter arrives as the water would freeze into ice. It is unlikely that this will happen here, highly unlikely.
All of the above is true. As I say:
Me: I always tell the truth. Well sometimes I exaggerate a little.
Alter Ego: But you do not need to exaggerate these days.
Me: That is SO true. Remember that saying Truth is stranger than fiction.
Alter Ego: I do! You spoke of it at length in a prior blog
Me: I did! Readers should type truth is stranger than fiction into the search engine of the blog and with any luck at all, they can read my prior writing. At the moment I do not have the icon and cannot use my own search engine and Computer Guru says he cannot fix it. It is MOST irritating.
Just so you can see how exciting my life really is please see the other photo. It was taken at a magnificently restored railroad building that has been here in Medina since the Ottoman Empire. (For you not knowledgable in history it was a long time ago).
So this has been the most fascinating journey of my life. I can see first hand, with my own eyes, what is happening (and has happened) in Saudi Arabia. Billions and billions of dollars are being spent by the government in the restoration of historic sites, the preservation of Mohammed’s (Peace be Upon Him) every move. It is impossible to imagine the amount of money spent in Mecca in the restoration, enlargement and daily maintenance of sights. It is absolutely awesome. The lies of Western media must be revealed and revealed soon. I only hope that I can help do this. It seems that I may be able to do this. I am convinced that this is Allah’s plan for me – otherwise why would all of this be happening? It is so unlikely. Look at the synonyms of unlikely: implausible, improbable, questionable, unconvincing, remote, far-fetched, incredible, unbelievable, inconceivable, unimaginable, fantastic, fabulous, fanciful, absurd, preposterous; tall, cock and bull, hard to swallow/take.
The antonyms are likely and believable. Synonyms are plausible, likely, convincing, probable, possible, feasible, tenable, reasonable, sound, logical, within the bounds of possibility, able to hold water, with a ring of truth; conceivable, imaginable, thinkable.
As a lawyer would say to the court, when all the evidence presented has proves their case, often beyond a reasonable doubt.
Me: I rest my case.
The beautifully restored train station, some framed photographs from the museum and the manager’s gift to me shall be pictured.