Doha is a place that intrigues me dearly, since I have a lot of expat friends here. I’ve been to a couple of Middle East countries already, with their level of Islamic beliefs differ slightly in significance (for me) because of how I see their culture on the streets. I’ve been to Jeddah, Riyadh and Dammam – to name a few – and amongst these countries, it is in Doha that I can actually move a little more freely.
As a Christian, I am fascinated with the Muslims. I am fascinated with how they uphold their principles from childhood to adulthood. A while ago, I went down the hotel alone to eat breakfast. As I was about to enter the elevator, a young muslim kid let me in and then he went out. I told him, “Come, we can go down together.” He hesitates at first, but awkwardly follows. The ride down the elevator was an awkward one. Back in Manila, it doesn’t matter who I’m with inside an elevator; but apparently here – it does. Or it feels like it does.
Inside the breakfast lounge, families are seated together. Kids would be kids, in their usual appearance. Married muslim woman would wear full length Abayas from head to toe, Hijabs are worn over their face exposing only a glimpse of their beautiful eyes. Men would wear a Thobe with Ghutras on their head – screaming with full authority. And then there I was, at a corner of Movenpick Hotel’s breakfast lounge – feeling like an outsider. But the lone moment made me extra observant, careful and a little embarrassed.
I was embarrassed enough to realize that my outfit yesterday during our tour was a little inappropriate. I was fully aware that in Doha, people were a little bit more lenient when it comes to tourist. We were not required to wear Abayas anymore (which is a first in a Middle East country that I’ve been to) but we were advised to dress decently. You know, if I were actually in Riyadh wearing what I wore yesterday – I would’ve been sent to jail by a Watawa.
Anyway, during the tour, we went to The Museum of Islamic Art. The Architectural Landscape of the grand entrance amazes us in such way that we spent almost an hour taking selfies and photographs of the place. It has a scenic vibe similar to that of Beverly Hills plus an over looking ocean view similar to that of Dubai. The entire trip’s high light was at the Museum’s facade, actually. Lol.
Inside the museum stood different artifacts aging from a decade to a century. The Medieval Horse Armour truly is a breathtaking view – learning that in Ancient times; Muslims were to use this kind of armor as a standard equipment for heavy Calvary.