I have a unique history with Bahrain. Gosh I love this country and its people. I immediately feel relaxed once I set foot on this small Kingdom. I first went to Bahrain in winter 2006, once in 2007, once in 2008, once last April and last weekend. Each visit was short but carried so many memories full of laughter and fun. I love all the creative restaurants and traditional shops they have; I love their shopping malls and beaches. But what I love the most is the people and the atmosphere they create. So simple, so kind and honest. No one interferes with other’s personal affairs; no one stare at others in cafes; no one comments on and judges other’s life style. You can be yourself; you can feel so relaxed; you can go out without being harassed; you can wear what you want without being judged; you can smile at people and they wont expect that you have bad intentions behind your smile. Of course I have met my share of arrogant and bitchy Bahrainis, but those have deflected genes.
I went to Bahrain last weekend for one of my best friend’s wedding. I don’t think I will ever attend a wedding like it, and I don’t think that anyone deserves a wedding like it but her. My friend Moneera is the kindest most compassionate honest person I have known. Everyone loves her for her unique kindness; for her radiant soul; for her beautiful laugh. She is everyone’s best friend, she is always there for everyone and she always spreads happiness where ever she goes. She is the antidote for sadness and boredom! A girl full of life and laughter. I always wonder how a tiny girl like her radiates with such positive energy and happiness, how could her tiny body carry so much sunshine. But this is her, this is my tiny pretty friend.
Her wedding was a fairy tail and she was the fairy covered in gold. I wouldn’t do her just if I tried to describe her graceful dress with its long tail; or her brilliantly simple makeup and hair. Everything was so simple, so elegant. So opposite of what I am used to see here. Even the wedding hall and the guests, everything was in harmony because they all shared one ingredient, which is simplicity with sprinkles of compassion for the bride. Her wedding, a Bahraini wedding was very different from anything I have seen in Qatar. It was fun, extremely fun! Everyone was dancing, everyone was happy. And even those who were just sitting on the table were clapping and waving their hands. Then the groom came in with a band of men behind him singing and playing drums. Oh I must tell you about the band; in one word, they were COOL! I think it was the same band that did Nawal’s “zaffa”. Their music makes you want to dance even if you didn’t want to or didn’t know how to. They had great show going on when the groom came in. Then they left to continue singing behind a curtain. Then the beautiful couple sat on the stage while their family and friends were dancing expressing their happiness for them. The bride’s cousins and friends were dancing, some were wearing abaya and some were not. Her friends and family all greeted the groom and took pictures with him. No one thought “weee 3aib ma yest7oon!” no one thought that her friends are trying to grab the groom’s attention, in short, no one had dirty twisted thoughts about those girls expressing their happiness. And the bride herself was not thinking any of those perverted thoughts. There was kindness in people’s hearts, purity and love. God forbids a girl smiles at her friend’s husband here, what a scandal it would be! There were no people staring; gossiping; criticizing what other’s wear and how they dance. There were no people expressing their sad opinions about the hall decoration! There were no people who thought that dancing for the bride was “3aib” or non prestigious!
The groom left leaving the bride with her friends and family. The party went on till 2:30 a.m and the end was the best. The band came in again to do the bride’s “zaffa”. Moneera was happy, dancing her way out, and the people who she loves, the people who love her were around her singing, clapping and dancing until her husband took her away. Bless the beautiful couple. We all wish them happiness, healthy life and many pretty babies!
Love you Manoor.