Last Friday my wife had a desire for Persian food. We were not able to get a reservation at Darya, so we opted to compromise on food from the Muslim neighborhood in Anaheim. Our first choice was Kareem's, but it was closed for Friday religious services. Our next choice was the always reliable Sahara Falafel. As usual, the food was great. It was the interaction with Islam that caught my attention.
The beat up old TV was showing Friday prayers from a mosque. I could not identify the language. There were several men seated and eating while watching. They gave me the normal once over when we walked in, but I felt welcome.
The owner/manager extend a heartfelt greeting and treated us like we were his best customers. He made a special effort to put me at ease. Again, I felt welcome.
The restaurant had a flyer promoting an anti-war demonstration. It's understated claim was to stop the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Palestine. It was the only flyer in the restaurant.
I watched the sermon while I ate. I did not understand a word. Nobody bothered me. Heck, few people even looked my way. Most were to preoccupied in their own business or in watching the sermon.
When we left, the manager/owner said, "Peace be with you". He walked out of the restaurant as we left. He watched as we walked to my truck. I normally walk with a Buck knife handy, the place is not safe, it pays to be careful. The manager/owner was making sure we were getting to our vehicle safely. It was a nice touch.
I enjoy these types of experiences. I get a chance to learn about people and their cultures. But I have to be honest, I would have walked out if the Hour of Power were on the TV. I must have some bias. Technorati tags: Islam, Religion
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