So a couple of friends of mine went out to dinner, and of course the whole menu was all in Spanish, and so it wasn’t as easy to find something I could eat (for me it takes some time translating from Spanish to English, then working out of I could eat it). I cannot eat meat (Carne), chicken (pollo), ham (jamon), some fish, so when going out to eat in a Spanish place, it is very difficult to find something I can eat, because they do not understand the concept of being a vegetarian. So when I go out to eat, my usual order is literally Spanish Ommelete, which is Egg and potatos cooked as an omelette, it is really really good. Or Patatas Bravas, which is essentially chips with a ‘spicy sauce.’ However, in this case I was luckily enough that they had actual Veg on the menu, which was some sort of Aurbergine Tapas, and another mixed Veg one. It was Gooooood.
So my friend asked me, do you not feel constricted that you cannot eat everything, and do you not feel like you want to rebel at all. I think it’s a fair point. I mean, there is a lot we, as Muslims cannot do, we cannot drink alcohol, go into McDonalds order anything on the Menu, go grocery shopping and not checking the ingredients on the smallest of things like Chocolate in case they have alcohol or gelatin. But I answered her in all honesty, I have never felt the need to eat pork, or drink alcohol.
And I explained that everything in Islam is all about God. We are Big on God. Our aim is simply to serve God. So for example Alcohol, even in its minute quantities can take you away from God, you lose sight of the true meaning of life.
I never leave my house without a few things, you know standard things like phone, wallet etc. but also my Mohr (Turbah) and compass. My motto is ‘If its time to pray, its time to pray.’ I would like to think it has worked out quite well for me so far. You see I have a new aim in life (amongst many others) that I aim to pray at some Cool places. As has been blogged before, on a mountain, on a beach, in palace gardens, in a park in perfectly random cities across Espana. To add to my growing list, on a beach in Cadiz, and roadside (literally) somewhere near Arcos de la Frontera and on a train going from Malaga to Madrid. On the train, my friend asked me what these things are. Firstly, I feel honoured enough that they are comfortable asking me such a question. I think its an honour when non-Muslims ask me about my faith. Secondly the answers have been heard before, the compass points to Makkah, and the Mohr, you place your forehead on it, so that you are praying on something natural that God has made.
Hats go off to my 2 friends that I travelled with, despite being non-Muslim they never once made me feel uncomfortable about me praying, they even encouraged it. I will be forever indebted to you, ensuring that I pray at some Awesome places.