We’ve visited Dar es-Salaam twice with Josie. I wanted to get Andrew a nice galabia before we left and had come across a store that had ones I thought he’d like—I just didn’t have him with me to try them on so I had to bring him back to it. We decided, while we were getting his galabia to get some more traditional clothing.
Isdals—full khimars, or head-style abayas—have been becoming increasingly popular here in Cairo. I started noticing them last year sometime, but I don’t remember seeing them much before. But there they were, for sale. I got one. And it took me forever to find out what it was called. It’s not a chador because there are openings for the hands and it has snaps to hold it together. It’s not a khimar because it goes all the way to the ground, not just to the waist. It’s not a burqa or abaya since it rests on the middle of the top of the head and needs a niqab to cover the face still. So I guess it’s an isdal.
It’s super trendy.
The women working at the store gave instructions to Andrew while I was trying on the isdal, telling him that I only had to wear it outside and not to make me wear it in the house, etc.
When we mentioned that Josie wanted to try a niqab, the girls were shocked.
“She’s much too young for that!” they insisted, “Let her try a regular tarha* first and if she likes that then she can move onto the niqab when she is engaged or married. One step at a time.”
They seriously didn’t want her to buy a niqab. So I got one for me.
Since I was married it was okay.
When we were walking down the street a little later Josie and I were talking. There was a donkey cart in the middle of the road laden with gas canisters. I started side-stepping it but Josie was so lost in the conversation, however, that she didn’t. I called her attention to it just in time to have her come to a screeching halt mere inches from running head-on to the donkey, who was standing as still as a statue. He didn’t even blink. Josie did much more than blink—she shrieked and jumped out of the way. It was quite hilarious.
I think I’ve written far too much today so I’ll leave off with some lovely treasures we found at a shop in Dar es-Salaam.
Take a look at your keyboard, now look at this shirt. Now back to your keyboard, now back at the shirt.
GDHFTK FSFFVDEGA? Does that look like someone just pounded out random letters on the keyboard? I thought so…
This next shirt is just “gewwet!”
Cafe Pupu: to day is anoth gewwet day! I have full of games. Do you know ? I always come up with funny ideas.
In case you’re wondering if we’re waiting to replenish our wardrobe until after we return to the States, the answer is yes.
*Tarha is slang for hijab, a headscarf.