Bunnies, Ducklings, and Camels... Oh My!
Last night I discovered a place where dreams come true and fluffiness abounds. Down one of the maze-like aisles of Souq Waqif, (a traditional open-air market located a few blocks from my hotel) I heard chirping. I continued walking until the I found the source of the chirping: in the plaza in front of me were cages upon cages of birds, as well as tiny bunnies, ducklings, kittens, puppies, chinchillas, and turtles. I couldn’t believe my eyes and spend the next hour in awe surely risking various diseases as I cuddled week-old bunnies.
Some of the group member’s were less than thrilled with the thousands of animals for sale, worrying whether or not they’ll get sold and about the conditions they are kept in. I’ve thought about these things and don’t have an answer to what happens or any knowledge of the Souq’s practices, but if its any consolation, I’d buy up every single bunny, duckling, and kitten if I could manage to sneak them through customs.
Another animal I’ve been excited about here is the camel. I couldn’t wait to see a camel, watch camel races, and potentially ride a camel… I didn’t; however, expect I’d have the chance to eat camel. (Disclaimer: I know that sounds weird. Most dog-lovers probably don’t aspire to try dog meat, but don’t think too hard about it.) When I opened a menu at a Moroccan restaurant tonight, I decided to give the camel sandwich a spin since it was something so unique. After trying the sandwich, I came to my most important cultural realization of the day: camel meat taste like hamburger.