Saturday, April 17, 2010

What I Like and Dislike About Arab Culture

I was in Algeria for 3 months and lived with my in-laws. I am SOOOO in LOVE with their culture but I also SOOOO HATE their culture.

What I Like

1) The Arabs are very protective toward their women.

a) When I was in Saudi Arabia airport a guy would not let me into Saudi and keep on saying Mahram! Mahram! ( Mahram means male relative ) . After my tour guide pointed to one guy as my mahram he let me in.
On my way home to Malaysia, they assigned that "Mahram" to sit between me and my grandma. In case man wants to do bad things to me or my grandma my "mahram" is near to punch him. YEAAAAAAA!!! Isn't that is cute?????? I felt like a princess or superstar!!

b) In Algeria, my adopted brother-in-law and nephew-in-law would accompany me whenever I want to go shopping. Great!!! Even when I wanted to go to the next shop they said "Wait! I am coming" They are so suspicious of the men (even their own friends!!!!) that they want to make sure no men is staring at me. I like it and feel so safe...heeeheheh

c) There are many, many instances.You won't truly feel it until you experience it yourself.

2)They are VERY warm people.

a) They are very patient with my insufficient Arabic. They NEVER made fun of me , not the kids, adults or the elders.

b) They say Good Morning! Afternoon! and Night! even they are in the same house before they go to sleep unlike us the East Asians.

c) The guests can stay until 12 and even sleep (!!!!!!! ) in their houses without prior invitation.

d) They always have guests and the house is always full of laughter and happiness. So many of us used to eat together and it was so much fun!

3) They are TOO generous to their guests.
a) (At least the South Algerians if not the entire Arabs countries) . Lamb meat is extremely expensive there but they always serve their guests with it as it is a symbol of first class treatment.

4) Presents!!!! We got lotssssssssssssss of it everytime my hubby and I go there!

5) They are a very strong community. Sometimes divorce happened. Most women there don't work. Even so, the mother always gets the custody of the children. The brothers or father of the women there will always welcome their daughter / sis with open arm and feed them n the children (of course the ex-husband has to give monthly allowance too). I know coz it happened to someone very close to me.

6) They love dancing even at workplace! .

7) It's ashame in their culture to divorce their wives. It's like you are not man enough to put up with a woman. So no matter what headache the wives give to their husbands, they won't be divorced. This explain the very low rate of divorce in Arab world compared to many races.

8) Arab men looooooveeee to spoil their wives with gifts, hugs and kisses. They are VERY VERY VERY gentle when they speak to their mom, sisters , wives, female classmates and etc. The older marriage gets in Arab societies the more romantic they are with one another. REALLY!!

1) Men are usually lazy in helping the wives with the household chores and North African men would be at the top of the list among all men. Middle Eastern men get maids for their wives but that's impossible for the North Africans coz of £££ problem. Funnily if the North African men marry foreign women ( Malaysians or Westerners) they are very very helpful. I guess it's a culture issue. I just want to remind all men that prophet Muhammad pbuh used to help his wives cook, clean and even sew his own clothes.

2) Sometimes guests (not your close relatives) could come and expect dinner to be served. The Asian societies would excuse themselves when dinner time is near. Not so for the Arabs.

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