26 March, 2006

What Does A Woman Want?

"Despite my thirty years of research into the feminine soul, I have not been able to answer... the great question that has never been answered: what does a woman want?" Sigmund Freud.

I don't have answers too! But some things I am sure of: women in Mukalla; women in Hadhramout - have certain priorities. They value their burqas and take much pride in the burqas; it is their most important attire. It is unimaginable, that any of them can leave their homes without being covered from head to toe, leaving only the eyes uncovered; in black. Only in black. Always in black. Except for a few bedouin women, who prefer colored burqas. I have never forced my wife to dress like that; she loves dressing like that. I some times try to coax her into leaving her face uncovered, instead of the eyes only; she would never accept doing that out of our home. She says: ' why should we imitate others?' With temperatures in some areas, at certain times, soaring up to 50 degrees centigrade, I don't know how the women manage being in the burqas!

Then there is the incense! Hadhrami women just love incense and perfumes! They say the best incense is the local one. Just as they say, the best lamb and the best honey come from Hadhramaut. They put the incense in burning charcoal in earthen jars to: smoke themselves, their burqas, their dresses and their homes. On Fridays in particular.

Gold! Of all the material priorities, gold is at the top for Hadhrami women; they adore gold! Gold is a necessity; every woman has gold; the more, the better and the more contended a woman is. Or so it seems to me. No woman attends a function without it: earrings, bangles, necklaces, belts etcetera. No woman gets married without gold.

And we: the men? Well........women are interesting! Most interesting!

"Why are women ... so much more interesting to men than men are to women?" Virginia Woolf