Get ready, hold on tight, gird your loins, for you are about to see the largest pot that has ever come into my kitchen.
Yeah right!, you say. Honestly, in my kitchen tonight. It may never happen again. The occasion for this large pot (which held Chicken Biryani) was a farewell party for one of Freedom Firm’s Social Workers, Rose Mary. Rose has been with FF for two years and has been a consistent, loving voice of truth for the girls in the Aftercare program. Rose is getting married to a gentleman that lived in her same town growing up, but now lives in the country of Oman. I have never known anybody to live there. I mean, I know people live there, but I have never known someone personally. Hurray for me, hurray for her, she is getting married to someone who lives in Oman.
A little insight into her marriage. Her upcoming marriage was arranged. I have read about arranged marriages before, sat by someone on a plane once that was going to go meet her husband for the first time, but again, never knew anyone personally that’s had an arranged marriage. And now I do. Big night for me. First it was the gigantic pot, then knowing someone from Oman, and then to top it off a good friend who has had an arranged marriage. It’s like I have won the lottery or something.
When I first moved here, I was walking home one day with someone I had just met at Jazzercise, Vidya. Vidya is from here and she asked me if I had a “love” marriage or an “arranged” marriage. What a funny question to ask. But come to find out, that most of the marriages here are arranged, from all sorts of religious backgrounds. The way that the parents decide do differ. Some use a matchmaker of sort, some use family connections, others use astrologers, etc... So, Rose, for example - her parents knew this other guy’s family, the families talked, they said if Rose and Robin meet and like each other, shwabam (sound effect), they’re engaged. So, Rose went down, about six months ago, to her home, Robin flew over, they met, talked - shwabam - engaged. Another friend (different story), who is actually a mom playing matchmaker, has her son’s astrology signs and matches it against the girl’s to see if they would be a match. She has gone through hundreds, and is becoming quite stressed about it. She asks me to pray for her, and I do.
I could go on and on about the subject, I find it fascinating. But I think I’ll turn the corner now. So, my mom is here. Hip, hip, hurray! Do you know what she brought in her suitcase, that got flagged by customs? Marijuana... Just kidding. A Honey Baked Ham... Not kidding. Yeah right!, you say (yet again), a Honey Baked Ham? I’ve known it for nearly 33 years - my mom (and dad) rocks! So, I am saving the Ham for Easter. My mom is up to her elbows in grandkids and cleaning/organizing my house - it’s her favorite place to be. And I am oh so grateful that she is here.