Thursday, February 4, 2010

In Celebration of Pilgrimages



With a slathering of Vichy 60-proof sun block and a spritz of Chanel No. 19 (must dress for an outing), I was out the door at 8:30 this morning to buy white cheese (mistakenly called "feta" here) at the government store for the workmen's lunch. I enjoy the 15-minute walk to the main road with its colourful houses.



Every Muslim aspires to fulfill their religious duty to make a pilgrimage to Mecca. In celebration of that journey, some decorate their homes with lively images on their return. These Hajj paintings are most prevalent in the villages of Upper Egypt and out in the oases in the Western Desert. The central focus of the pilgrimage and the art is the Ka'bah in Mecca and the Prophet's Mosque in Madinah.



In addition, the pilgrim often asks artists to document their journey, hence images of airplanes and boats.



It would seem that one pilgrim had a particularly rough ride on high seas judging by the artist's telling of the event.



And I am particularly fond of the painting of the dancing horse, which probably performed during the pre-pilgrimage send-off.



Completely unrelated to this post, but just to add some excitement, here is a Nile Monitor sunning itself on the bank of the canal this morning. Either that, or it is waiting for the fox to come out of its den. I keep a close eye out for these 'crocs' when walking. They're big (this one is about 5' long) and they're nasty. You can see that this one is looking at me with lunch on her mind.



And speaking of lunch, I should not have been surprised when the workmen didn't show up today. Bokra Insha'Allah. (An all-too-common expression meaning "Tomorrow, God willing".)

1 comment:

AMOROMA said...

Are the workmen still working on the screens?