As regards my evaporation from this world–my untimely demise as a puff of smoke (Winston light golds, short), I have been diligentlt training my replacements.
Today, it was a young man from Egypt, who, aside from becoming enamored with my lovely daughter Beba, was also taken aback by our common sentiments: not least of which is that the re’er badiye smell bad, and nothing beats that lingering odor of Somali perfume ( I imagine that this mysterious scent–mostly foul, but sometimes sweet, in the way that your fathers weekend armpits, or your mothers menstrual odor can be)–in a certain light, be called endearing, and even comforting to one who grew up around people who lack basic utilities like running water and common cordial etiquette.
My best guess is that rose water and cheap soap combined with a distinct odor that eminates from the skin-melanin? hormonal differences between north east African genetic markers that determine body odor are different than my own?– or is it that they are so horrified by the naked body that they quickly shower or bathe, and forget to wash all of those crevices that contain odor–and then, to only cover those crevices in hurried furtive splashes with aftershave and rose water, as if the introduction of some new smell might hide the sexual organs completely, or mask the smell of horror that one might feel when looking down upon a de-clitorated body?
I don’t know–either way, my replacement and I talked of many things. The similarity between Hebrew and Arabic language ( he had no idea that Habiba is Chaviva in Hebrew–or that Viva means ‘to live’ in Spanish–or that the Muslim Brotherhood was indeed an ELECTED majority–a democratically elected majority of leaders whose very presence in THEIR OWN COUNTRY offended that countries United States backed military so deeply that they were ‘overthrown’
Of course, as he noted, his sisters liked the military better, and Assisi (?)
They felt safer under military rulel
(to be continued)