My time in Bahla is coming to an end. Today was pretty low key; actually, a lot of days in Oman in low key– people are more relaxed here and move more slowly.
I got up and went to the living room to eat breakfast with my host mother. We had hamburger buns with a fried flat egg in between (they call the egg an omelet; it’s basically an omelet except they do not fold the egg over and there is nothing but egg). Some people stayed the night so again there were many children running around the room.
After a bit, I went with my host mother and host brother to a store that sells items that are very cheap (wholesale). On the way to the store, we passed some camels (just walking around, no big deal) as well as an area used for camel racing (when Sultan Qaboos visits Bahla, a lot of camel racing events take place). We also passed some people standing by the road trying to hitchhike. My host mother told me that it isn’t hard to hitchhike in Oman because people are very nice and will let people come in their car to go somewhere. At the store I bought some needed school supplies and hangers, hamduhlillah! We then stopped at a local tea shop to drink karak chai (tea with milk), an Omani specialty. Click here for the recipe.
Back at the house all the girls went into the cousins’ room and we hung out there for a bit. We then went out to the living room to eat some fresh dates (just picked). These dates are the last fresh dates they have because date season is ending now. From now on until the next season they will eat dried dates.
We hung around in the living room for some more time until lunch. The men ate first and then the platter for the women was brought out. We ate rice with grilled semak (fish) as well as more salad!! Yay!
Then we hung out some more in the living room and shortly people went to their respective rooms for their afternoon nap. I need to get used to afternoon naps because I’m one of the only ones who doesn’t sleep, but then I’m exhausted by the evening. I’m just not tired at that time!
After people woke up, we sat in the living room until we left at 5:30. On the way back, my host father and host brothers had to stop at an engagement party for men, so my host mother and I waited at her parents’ house while they went. We sat with other family members until we were picked up and then back to Muscat!