Soomaalidu waxay ku maahmaahdaa, Haddaad tagto meel laga il laayahay, ishaa layska ridaa and the equivalent translation of this proverb would the equally similar English proverb When in Rome, Do as the Romans Do –that’s precisely the philosophy many Somalis are adopting while they are adapting to changes in culture and environment.
Somalis are people of very unique a nature. Very Distinct people indeed. We somehow find it very easy to assimilate into any culture that we come across – we are easily absorbed by their customs - be they good or bad. Case in point, Valentine's Day!
Valentine’s Day doesn’t have any special meaning for me, neither celebrated it nor do I intend to, but was brought to my attention by a female friend of mine, Farxiya (Pseudonym), who was asking me for gift ideas, after becoming tired of the regular perfumes and cards I guess! I was taken aback by her audacity. If I had asked her what Valentine’s Day was, she probably wouldn’t be able to tell.
Despite the murky history of the origin of Valentine’s Day, yet it is celebrated by millions, if not billions of people across the globe. What surprises me the most though, is the celebrations held across the Muslim lands, Specially UAE and its neighbouring countries. Has anyone seen the amount of red roses and gift packs that fill up the entire shopping malls?