In Iraqi Kurdistan, we eat a lot of Turkish and Lebanese food. My colleague’s favorite lunch place is a Turkish restaurant, where we always order chicken shwarma. (These photos were taken before ramadan… Now many restaurants are closed during the day for the holiday as people are fasting until sundown.)
I’m making a cultural wardrobe adjustment for work in Iraq. First I looked around to see what women here are actually wearing; there is huge diversity in the way they experiment with personal fashion within the framework of cultural and religious convictions. I’ve gone for long, light tunics as a first step. I am still getting used to shopping alongside women in hijab. A woman (in hijab) behind me at the cash register saw that I was buying these tunics and did a double take of me in my skinny jeans. Hehe.
My other story about hijab– before I left Bosnia, Auntie Djemila told me, “Don’t even think about covering yourself! I am Muslim and pray 5 times a day and fast during ramadan, and I don’t wear hijab.” This puts a whole new dynamic into the morning ritual of standing in front of the closet deciding what to wear.
These days I am so inspired Un-Fancy‘s strategies for paring down, creating a capsule wardrobe, buying strategically. I’m still figuring out my strategy…
Gas prices rose 1000% in 48 hours in Kurdistan. There are lines over a kilometer long in front of the gas stations which are still working. (The lines of white cars in the photo is one of those gas queues). My friend says he’s going to buy a bicycle! That’s the spirit. The Turkish prime minister promised gasoline from Turkey to fill the gap. But for now, these lines have a culture of their own. People set up umbrellas in the car to make shade; others leave their cars to chat; venders open little stands to sell cigarettes and snacks to the ones who are waiting..