Monday, May 16, 2016

A walk, some pot, & a mosque

Every year around the world people get together to explore their communities by taking part in Jane's Walks.  The Calgary Women's Centre asked if I'd be interested in taking photos of their feminist themed walk, held  Saturday, May 7th.  For sure, I said.  An added bonus, at City Hall, our last stop, we encountered a Global Marijuana March. Jane's Walk done, I followed the legalize marijuana protesters down Stephen Avenue. Up wind.  There was some blazing up and chanting "Free Pot Now!"  When I told a passerby what they were protesting she asked, "Isn't Trudeau making it legal next year?"  "Then I guess they'll be chanting 'pot for free'," I joked.

CWC Jane's Walk @ The Bow Building
CWC Jane's Walk @ the Glenbow Museum.  The young lady was concerned about a couple of really loud people on Stephen Avenue.
Global Marijuana March

A friend was invited to a free community brunch held Sunday, May 15 at a local mosque.  I told her she would have to tell me all about it. Instead she managed to get an invitation for me, as well.  When we entered the Calgary Islamic Centre we were asked if it would be okay to take our photos during the event.  I said sure, then asked if I could take photos in return.

Very, very friendly people. The food was good, light Mediterranean fare.  In the basement, tables were set up diner-style with the buffet of food lining a wall.  At other tables volunteers drew mehndi designs on our hands, demonstrated how to wear a hijab, wrote our names in Arabic, and handed out leaflets and copies of the Quran.  A mother of one of the mehndi artists, who did not look much older than her teenage daughter, sat with us and spoke about the mehndi she had done when she was married. Another young looking volunteer, a father of 4 children ranging from age 3 to 12, sat at our table and answered any questions we posed.

Later, up stairs, there was a lecture about Islam followed by a 45 minute Q&A.  The lecturer really, really loved to talk. His Q&A replies were usually 15 minutes each. The mosque itself was very understated, not much in the way of decoration, and functional. I counted four wall clocks, not including the digital board indicating the times for the day's five prayers.

The lecturer and his teacher. Behind them are boards indicating the times for the day's five prayers.
There was not much in the way of decoration in the mosque.


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