Sunday, May 3, 2009

"You can't wear Keds!!!" ... "What about my vintage Converse, my Vans?"

I think niqab is mustahaab but I think our girl Boxie just WANTS too look like a ninja-------hiiiiiiiiii yaaaaaaaaa! InshaAllah soon you'll get to see some more of her vivid punky-cute personality hijab style vids. Especially when she shows you her active-girl styles:D I am not really sk8ter chic, and I never went through a Gothic-Lolita phase. I was always very blase-euro with an African sportif and now I am a part-time niqabi working my way to breaking it to family and friends that I might be a full-time one when I come back from the Gulf (I love a very girly glamorous look while Boxie look is all about what she loves).

Boxie knows what I've been reading and she's my travelling partner for when we go to UAE, Oman, Yemen (inshaAllah) and Morroco, and in UAE she plans to wear niqab too, and since she never deals well with the heat, she's been practicing wearing niqab when we go eat, experiencing what it is like to eat out in it (tonight we went out for thai). AND she's been getting used to the people that think ou lose your hearing when they can't see your face. Like you become an object. First, a man tells us, this is Canada, we don't have to "wear that here". We say, we know, we're Canadians, we choose to wear it, we like it. I mention it is a respectful symbol of my feminity, that I am to be taken as a woman but not judged for that and all the things a woman is supposed to be. Boxie mentions it is way more comfortable than high heel shoes. Fellow says, "but I am sure you two girls are beautiful under there." We say, yes, we are, and that is why we cover. Every woman is beautiful, but the beauty that counts can't be covered by any piece of cloth. The man seems to nod in agreement. "So that way you are judged for your minds and not your bodies." He seems to give us his blessing and dispearses. The woman sitting next to us seems happily surprised.
The next bus ride and more ignorant kind of man seems to say ``Didn`t know it was halloween yet. That isn`t necessary in this country`` and this is the kind of man it isn`t worth talking to because he is talking about you, not to you. But Boxie does. She says, `excuse me, I`m Canadian. This is my country too. I`m French, English, Scotish and Native. I choose this-`` ... The woman behind her says, ``So you are a true Canadian``. Everyone on the bus starts to glare at the prejudiced man. He stammers ``I didn`t know you were ``real muslims``. I though it was some kind of halloween costume.`` He only says that cuz he`s about to get a smack down from a group of people who won`t tolerate his kind of behaviour.
A bunch of women ease drop on our convos. They smile at us, and seem to realize we are not as limited or ignorant as they suppose. We like fashion, we speak Canadian politics, we travel, we understand pop culture references, we like to laugh at ridiculous social behaviors. Some girls ask us where we buy our abayas. They a ren`t Muslims, but they have dated Arabs, and want to learn about Islam. We exchange phone numbers and plan to meet for coffee, inshaAllah.
We run into some Saudi sisters, pray together, then are offered free icecream from a friend of my husband since he owns an icecream shop. I couldn`t eat another bite. I leave. Boxie encounters one more ignorant comment from some drunks that call out `derka burqa`` but she isn`t wearing a niqab anymore. If I was there I might have gone up to them to explain what a khimar is, what a niqab is, what a burqa is, what an abaya is, ect... so at least if they want to mock something, they know what they are mocking. But I have gone home.
Next day, we encounter no ignorance till some group of drunk skater boys tells us to go back to our country. Boxie and I chase after them. We tell them we are Canadian and Boxie`s part Metis-Native American (we leave out the rest of her mixie-ness) so she`s more Canadian than they are. The girl that`s with them tells them they are embarrassing her, and one of the guys tells his friend to stop being so prejudiced. Then the same one that spoke the first time tells us to get our own culture, that we`re white. Well duh. He says Boxie shouldn`t be wearing Keds sneakers. What about all her vinatge Converse I`m wondering. She can probably skateboard better than you... His girl says just what I`m thinking: ``He`s just upset that you`re wearing Keds.`` LOL Can`t a niqabi skateboard... PindZ (aka Boxie) in her 80s pink rimmed sunglasses, black Saudi strong niqab, skinny jeans, punky t-shirt, and too-short abaya over top.
Below is what I`m wearing. Of course, skirt and short sleeves under abaya. I get on my bus and the bus driver asks me where I get my clothes from. This one, I say, is from London. My answer surprises him. I go on, it is common with the Pakistani community there. But I rush to add, I wear clothes from all over the world, as long as they are modest. I say I love bright African prints, black Gulf abaya, and then he asks me about Western clothing. I say I wear Western clothing under my modest clothing most of the time, and that I love designer coats from Jacobs, and long maxi dresses from Guess but that most of the time Western clothes are designed too hot. That loose robes are lighter if you want to wear girl tighter clothes underneath. He asks me if I ever cover my face, and I say yes, if I am wearing too much make up to be modest otherwise, or if I feel safer that way. He asks why I wear make up in the first place and I say that I am going to an all woman`s party where we girls dress the way we like to. I tell him I also like to dress up for my husband, and even to go pray. He asks me where our Mosque is, why men and women are seperate there, why I like a seperation for men and women in the Mosque.... He practically stops the bus to ask me when and if he can come to see the men`s mosque and ask some of the men some questions.
Niqab actually gives me more oppurtunities to speak about Islam. Yes, ignorant people are drawn to those who wear it like a magnent, but aren`t those the people that need the truth the most... Afterall... I was one of those once.

BTW, Boxie and Megan, I had fun and am sooooooooooo full. InshaAllah we can keep a look out for the bus driver on friday!

38 comments:

kakchik said...

Masha-Allah! Wow! That was one interesting story of your experience and I would say that you're really brave to do all those things. Living in a non-Muslim country and being confident in practicing Islam make me feel proud to have an acquaintance/friend like you.
LOL wearing Keds might look strange with an abaya but who cares as long as you are comfortable. I do agree that niqab gives us more opportunity to talk about Islam and I've experienced it too with the Chinese here.
And I do wear western clothing under my abaya too although I'm living in South East Asia.

Habibti said...

lmao thats so funny you guys such interestng encounters. i only had one Masha Allah. no actually two that was the same person. first encounter pleasant but weird. second one weird and really displeasant. too many weirdos out there. but how can you wear clothes like that underneath your abaya? isnt it hot? lol i say it because i start to feel the heat here Alhamdoulilah

Aalia said...

Asalaamu `alaikum wa rahmatullah!!

OooO i loooved this post!! Brought back memories!!

And what's wrong with wearing skater shoes with an `abaya... remember my Fubu & Phat Farm skate shoes ;-)

Ahh, tell Pindz she needs to help me find a pair of pink Chucks when y'all get here insha'Allah!!

Adventurous Ammena said...

subhanallah you get so many good responses masha'allah... I never got that feeling when we were there but then I suppose its different when youre a visitor :D masha'allah

UniMuslimah said...

Salaam alaikum sister,
Yes! That is why I love wearing niqab (although I don't wear it full time)! You get such an oprotunity to inform non-Muslims about Islam.

It's sort of odd, but I take a sickening sort of joy in being told to go back to my country- only because I get to tell them I'm part native and the rest of my family came in the 1700s. When people find out my family is from Newfoundland and that I speak with a bit of an accent at times- it's too funny!

You and your friend seem so brave and you seem to do so much to do so much to dispel the negative stereotypes surrounding Muslims and niqabis. May Allah (swt) reward you for all the good you do.

Cheers.

HijabChic said...

as salam alaykum!

great post! :) i really enjoyed reading this

~PakKaramu~ said...

Pak Karamu reading your blog

nanusa said...

excellant post...mashallah...

Anonymous said...

hey sis! i always hear that it is very hard to wear hijaab in america and niqaab(face covering) is harder a friend of mine says that if you travelling to america with niqaab they will not let enter the country and think you are a terrorist is this true?.also wen you do wear your niqaab sometimes as you mentioned and wen people consistently stare does it make you awkward?-miss sa

Pixie said...

kakchik: MashaAllah. I know wearing niqab isn't common where you live. May Allah subhanhu wa ta'ala reward you.

Pixie said...

Habibti: Not too hot. We live in Canada after all:D

Pixie said...

Aalia: LOL I'm sure PindZ can read your comment here, inshaAllah.

Ammoorraah said...

Salaamualaikum!!

this was soooo funny!! lol boxie's style and urs is like my style mixed in one!! while i am verrrry girly and pritzy, i have this 'scene' style mixed with it and i think the mix together with hijab is amazing!!

To annony:
Noooo thats not true lol, well in the air port i have seen plenty of niqaabis, with my cousin being one, if u are coming from another country u will have to lift ur veil in customs just for indentification other than that i have had no issue with it in america. and if u feel threatend in an air port just take the niqab off in there and put it back on out side. Also i see alot of women from the gulf say that are scared when they come here... but to me its a big excuse because they take off their niqab, abayas and sometimes the khimar as well, never let ANY man scare u away from what allah subanaa wa ta;ala made obligatory for u!! but over all u have some states in america where its not comman at all, and others (ohio!! where im from) where its more comman in the muslim communities than u think, but if u reaaaallly want to wear in it the states go to philly!!! mashaallah so many where it there, even non muslim women!

Chica said...

salaam sis, the people of canada seem to be nicer than the people of london and thats for sure. sounds like you had some amazing experiences and your subtle dawah in each situation is admirable.

having those kinds of experiences seems like a total dream to me... cant imagine experiencing this kind of stuff... in lodon everyone is so miserable... and they darent make comments which i would then address and they darent ask questions either if they were interested!

oh well, maybe my experiences are still to come as i am still a newbie hijabi so maybe ...

Anonymous said...

I was thorougly enjoying reading about your day. Ahhh, you two silly niqaabis :-))))/

Now, what got me interested is the post of Chica. I cant stop wondering now how are Muslim women treated in England? Never been there with a hijab so I am currious to know.


I have traveled with my hijab to many places. Recently I have been to Maine (I was visiting a friend of mine who lives in Bangor) where people were extremlly polite. They just did not know what to make of me. I find it interesting that when people see that I am Caucasian they cant really figure out the hijab on my head. MANY, and I mean many, think that I am a Jewish woman. When I am not in the mood to discuss, I simply nod my head in agreement and keep it moving. I am sooo bad :-)

Lisa said...

I'm glad you guys are practicing for your trip! Morocco sounds like it will be fun in addition to everything else. I loved reading this! Love you Pixie.

Anonymous said...

what is khimar?
paula

Boxie said...

Aalia I will totally help you find shoes. lol I have the Kelly shoes vid playing in my head.

Anonymous said...

:D Boxie's outfit is really cool and original. lol I don't have to throw out my fun outfits to wear hijab. i like mixing colors. My outfits depend on my mood. Sometimes i go for bright colors or cute pastels, and when it's overcast I wear red and black, or all black. it's fun!

ninjas are awesome!
~Violet

Chica said...

Ah anon - what i mean is... in London veryone is pretty reserved. Like you just keep yourself ypo yourself and everyone is paranoid about being so tolerant and politically correct that they dare not make a comment about your hiab, or your beard ... anything like that.

Obviously you do get the odd ignorant person who would purposely but subtly sit on a seat far away from you, who retend they dont see you and fail to hold a door open but he... i used to get that even before i covered my hair, what with simply being brown and all LOL.

but yeah london is pretty tolerant and i used to want to move away and live in an 'islamic' country if one still exists but since i strated to wear hijab, i realised how wonderful london actually is.

its great and so easiy to be almost anything here ... and generally you are protected by the laws of the land... (when your not being mistaken for a terrorist and being shot in the head on an empty tube whilst minding your own bi'ness that is...!) oter than that ur fine!

Stacy aka Fahiima said...

Those are some interesting experiences for sure. I would definitely stand up for any lady in niqab that was getting harassed in public. Way to go for being positive and doing what you could to teach people about the true Islam.

Maryam said...

The pink abaya is so pretty!

Pixie said...

Ammena: Yeah, plus most people are sweet here. very few are rude. But most Canadians HATE niqab.

Pixie said...

Ammoorrah: Your style sounds cute. Would love to see it:D

Yeah. I've had no problem at the airports here in North America. Europe can be a different story. The Netherlands can be harsh on niqabs.

Pixie said...

UniMuslimah: Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! A Newfie Muslimah. You are the first I've met:D

Pixie said...

Hijab Chic: Jazakallah kheiran.:D I aim to please (or inform).

Pixie said...

PakKAramu: I would appreciate if men didn't comment here thanks. This blog is for women.

Pixie said...

Nanusa: Salaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaam sis!!!!!!!!!!! InshaAllah I can see you someday soon.

Pixie said...

Chica: London is easier cuz most people won't harass you like here but I guess they are more interested in other cultures as well.

Pixie said...

Lisa: Love you little big sis. Give Yousef a kiss (Yousef is her baby boyson ladies, just to clarify). Lisa:D

Pixie said...

Stacy Fahima: I loved you comment, mashaAllah. Thank you, for the bottom of my heart.

Pixie said...

Boxie: we shopped soooo much with Sammi.:D

Pixie said...

Violet: Boxie is totally laid back and cool, always. LOL.

Pixie said...

Maryam: it is from an old Imaancollections.com collection.

Sarah Plain & Short said...

Salam Aleikom,

how come we never run into eachother outside the masjid? and where is this wonderful ice cream? i would like to hang out with you two, if u don't mind my little mahram tagging along in his stroller :P

Sarah Plain & Short said...

Salam Aleikom,

We need to hang out sometime, I would like to hang out with u guys since we're clsoe in age. And where is this ice cream shop? Hope you wouldnt mind my little mahram in a stroller tagging along..!

Pixie said...

Sarah: email me your phone # and we'd love to have you little maharam tag along:D

caraboska said...

There are lots of hijabis in Philly? Non-Muslim hijabis??? That's good to know, actually, because I'm a non-Muslim hijabi originally from Philly. I live elsewhere now, every year I go to visit family, this will be the first year I go in hijab...