Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Politics et al

Politics et al

Great news in Ireland. The Protestants and the Catholics have formed a joint government in Belfast. Years of violence and hundreds dead over exactly what? I remember countless times of having to evacuate the underground or the train station at Victoria because of a bomb threat. I will say this about the IRA, at least they always called ahead to warn you.

It’s like the Sunni – Shi’a conflict; I don’t get it. I may be missing a ‘religious gene’ but don’t they have the same god? It’s like the Jews and the Christians. I mean you think Jesus is divine; others point to the fact that divinity was decided at the Council of Niacea in 325 AD making it more a political decision. But no matter when or how it came or did not come into doctrine what makes anyone think that you can convince others your god is more loving, and one they should worship by impaling them on a stake? I understand the political use of religion (the Spanish conquistadors, the Aztecs, and the measles); I don’t necessarily agree with it, but I understand it. I don’t understand killing others because they have a different belief system. I mean if it is truly about the belief and not about filling the church coffers why would we care if someone believes something different as long as it does not harm others? It does not make us wrong in our beliefs, albeit I personally always hold that out as a possibility for myself. I could be wrong. It’s quite freeing actually. I’ve been wrong before. I didn’t enjoy it, but it didn’t kill me. So why kill someone in the name of our gods? I don’t get it. I like the Hindu faith – fabulous creation myth and a god for every occasion.

It is going to be NINETY DEGREES in Rabat today said the Scot who does not do well in the heat. I know, I know – then what am I doing in Africa eh? Well it seemed a good idea at the time…

My child for writing about her personal issues, and posting the AIM conversation without asking has admonished me. She is absolutely right of course, but as I told her as ‘the mother’ she is a huge part of my life – not all of it certainly, but always the most important focus. It is however my responsibility to respect her privacy and her wishes. It is my dream to become a best selling author, not hers. I will in the future run any stories about her by her first for permission. I guess on the one hand it is nice that she reads my blog eh? The problem being I find so much to admire in her, and she is brilliantly funny. I feel sometimes I could chuck the whole ‘creative’ thing and just follow her about with pen and paper jotting down her wry utterances. Fortunately I am still having my own adventures, so best I make that the main focus of my meanderings.

I find that after “a certain age” it is not a lack of energy that is the problem, but inertia. A body at rest tends to stay at rest. Oh yes Mr. Newton I hear you talking! Once I get going I can wear the twenty-something-s into their afternoon naps while I wash up! The call of the couch or bed is much like the Sirens to Ulysses once I am seated comfortably however.

Getting books into Morocco is like threading a redneck through the Louvre on the afternoon of the Superbowl. (can I stereotype or can’t I?) Forget the expense (or not! It is outrageous) then comes the actual physical difficulty of getting them from point of origin to the door. Last time I placed an order with the university bookstore they landed in Casablanca and there they vanished! When I ordered the DVD release of “Starwars” from Amazon (sci-fi fans will understand this was a necessity, not a luxury) the cost of shipment was equal to the price of the DVD.

Checking upstairs and finding the staircase railing to the terrace too hot to touch, I decided it was time to unlace the woven mat from its position as a privacy wall on the west side of the terrace to its summer job of acting as shade provider over my glass roof. I managed to get it into place without too much difficulty. It covers about half the length of the roof. Moments after getting back downstairs the knock at the door reveals Abdul saying in hopeful terms, “Q is here?” He always ask this as my child is fluent in both French and Moroccan, whereas he and I have to stumble our way through his gutter English and my gutter French and Moroccan, but we made it. He, sweet man, was asking if the mat would provide enough shade, if not he could find a mat to cover the entire ceiling. What would you give for my landlord eh? The terrace bricks are so hot I can’t walk barefoot. I had to put on my sandals, like the sand at the beach on a scalding day.

But the sky! The sky here is like nothing I have ever seen. It is endless and a shade of blue that seems permeable. The clouds are high, white, and fluffy. With two notable exceptions: the rain clouds are flat, grey, and low; the sand storm cloud, depending on your proximity, is terrifying or hazy.

1333 hours: Oh boy I have mail, the snail kind. A big deal here when it is not a bill.

The word from Fez is that the kitty is a boy. The vet service in Morocco is free. Q had him dewormed and some other necessary procedures. Apparently he is only 28 days old! Poor little dear. She is bringing him home in a basket - stories of other foundlings come to mind.

For a good tale and wonderful use of language go to: http://ibeatrice.blogspot.com/

News from Fez - Q called from Coin Berbere where she has found two great rugs. A large one for upstairs and one for her birthday. Mohammad had to get on the mobile to chat for a bit. We are so pleased for him that he had a write up in the New York Times! The shopping experience in Morocco is more of a social occasion. You visit, you have mint tea and cookies, you look at the merchandise, you bargain, you have tea, you shake your head at the beauty of the rugs but oh my you just can't pay that much, he brings down the price, you visit some more, you try for a little more off, then you get yourself an item of beauty and a great story to boot.


pluto said...

> Getting books into Morocco is like threading a redneck through the Louvre on the afternoon of the Superbowl.

Hey, nice one, sports lover!

About the Sunnis and Shiites, Jews and Christians, I know, I know -- it's an eternal bloody mystery.

I Beatrice said...

Wonderful blog, Lady Macleod! I'm so glad to have found you, and will follow your daily adventures with much fascination.

Like you, I was once a Scots descendent in the wrong place. I grew up in New Zealand, where so many emigrating Scots found their complexions just weren't up to it, and they should never have come.

I have lived in, and been besotted with London now however, these more than fifty years. And would think of living nowhere else.

Please keep in touch. (I have left another comment for you on my own page.)

jenny said...

I love your style of writing and there is no need for you to follow your daughter around to jot down every witty thing she says. You hold your own!!

Thanks for your comments on my post and I'll be adding you to my links, please take that as a compliment!

lady macleod said...

Dear Pluto,

Thank you for the read, and the nice words. If only we could solve the religious differences problem, but then that is one of many reasons I turned down that Queen-of-the-World job. That and all the whinning was unbearable.

Dear i beatrice,

Thank you for the read and the compliments. New Zealand! No mean distance from home that. I too love London. My husband and I lived in Belgravia with a tiny rose garden when first we were married. London is such a fabulous walking-city.

Dear Jenny,

I most certainly do take that as a compliment and I thank you for it. Thanks for coming by.