Trip Start May 04, 2010
Trip End Sep 17, 2010

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Where I stayed
Dawn and Khalid's House

Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Sunday, April 25, 2010

  I arrived in London on Thursday the 26th, several days early to meet see my cousins Dawn, Khalid, and their two children Aaminah aged 4, and Aasiah aged 2.  However when I arrived at their house and checked email I found that my program had been delayed for another week due to the volcano in iceland.  
  My cousin Dawn (my mother's side) married into the Islamic faith four years ago and has had two kids Aaminah (4) and Aasiah (2) with her husband Khalid.  I have only met Khalid once in June last year so I thought it would be a good idea to come down a couple days early to see them.
  On Saturday we went to see the Asian section of the Victorian Albert Museum which was filled with vases and intricately designed carpets, and the science museum in which an exhibition was  featuring 1001 inventions of the muslim world, including early optic experiments carried out by the scientist Ibn al-Haytham which led to the invention of the camera
  Later that night we went to a family BBQ where I met Khalid's side of the family.  There were so many I could not remember their names.  However it was hosted by Rosina, and Zahid which is Khalid's younger brother, and several of their nephews were there also.  I found out most of them were older than me but despite this I was still regarded as their "Uncle."  I found it pretty weird. 
  There was a host of food including, kebabs, chicken drumsticks (all Halal) and ribs, however there was some asian deserts thrown in for good measure (and boy were they sweet!)  Not to mention a massive bon fire in the back garden with a Hookah burning nice apple, and mixed berry tobbaccos, which was highly pleasent, and a good alternative to drinking booze, which of course is banned in the Islamic faith.
  I was taken aback by the hospitality I was showed, and have found out that Muslims living in and around London are tremendously close as a family group, and have large families, though through the night it was predominatly men and women seperate, none of which wore a veil, just a simple head scarf.
  The Global Exchange program does not have another given start date so it looks like I will be staying with my cousins for another week, check back for an update soon...TT    
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Kieran on

Sounds cool man, and ur not even on the exchange yet.
keep us posted and continue having a great time

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