Entering the Holiday Season

— Written by a Teacher in N. Africa —

This Saturday, I was up early and decided to head to our “walmart” to pick up a few random items. I was in no rush, and began wandering around the home section. The first thing I noticed, was about 4 shelves worth of Christmas decorations! I was so excited! There were Christmas lights, tinsel, red and silver balls, and some star like items. I must admit though, my favorite were the “Christmas-like-[N. African]”items. What I mean by that, are things that have nothing to do with Christmas, but are gaudy and shiney enough [N. African] decorations that they can completely pass in the Christmas section. Huge gold dangley seashells, flowers with a big ruby jewels in the middle, and outdoor patio lights that could almost be Christmas lights. But hey, they are trying, right? The next highlight of the Marjan trip, was the appliance section. This year, the big holiday Aid Khabir, is the weekend after Thanksgiving. This is the holiday where [N. African] families purchase a live sheep, and slaughter them, just like Abraham did in the Old Testament. It is a sign of faithfulness and repentence.

In order to properly kill and eat the sheep, you need lots of tools, right? So, now…and this whole week….its your lucky day. On sale, are all sheep killing and eating tools. Knives, bbq grills, skewers, and a whole aisle of rope and saws. Yes, ropes and saws. Above the aisle are huge signs with a picture of a sheep looking over the top of the charcoal grill. Poor sheep doesn’t know whats coming. You know how after Thanksgiving Thursday, Christmas tree shops are popping up on random street corners and gas stations? Well picture the same thing here, only with live sheep. Families go pick it out, bring it home, and take care of it til its time to slaughter it. The bigger the sheep the better. Ahh, nothing says Happy Holiday’s like a little sheep blood and some good ol’ skewer sales.

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