Dinner in Saudi Arabia

Sunday, September 27, 2015 - By: Patricia P, Mackenzie ‘16

Aching hands permanently clenched, we were ready to serve a pinch of lamb and four falafel balls onto the next eager students’ plate. Our appreciation for the kitchen staff grew with each dinner we hastily slid down the table and put together. Seeped into our clothes were the familiar aromas of home. We served plate after plate of AL Kabsa, Lamb Shawarma, Kahyar Bi Laban, Falafel, and, of course, the hummus and pita. 

Eyeing the food with strange curiosity, our peers hesitantly took their plates only to quickly return for seconds. Dessert from the desert, the Om Ali and slices of date tarts, were being continuously replenished for there was never a time when kids didn’t want to try some more. The dinner was a great a success.

Looking over the serving glass pane, the green balloon population that once stood high and tall had all been captured by hungry hands. Twinkles from the silver and green streamers and decorations that adorned the caf made me miss the glimmering nights in the streets of Saudi Arabia. Dressed in thobes and abayas and all that was green, we all were filled to the brim with excitement as our peers asked us what we were wearing or what was so special about today. It was Saudi National Day, a day that we, even as expats, celebrate and with our Brentonian family each and every year. 

September 23rd is a day that I fondly recollect as a time and place where all cultures (we have 33 nationalities at Brentwood) come together to try some new food served by strangely dressed people and listen to some interesting music. Strange in a good way though, a strange in a sense that we 38 Saudi residents found normal. Through the blistering heat, thick humidity and casual camel crossing signs, we have found ourselves at Brentwood, and what better place to celebrate a day that means so much to us than with a group of people that mean just as much?

Patricia P, Mackenzie ‘16

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