The Problem with Burkas
See this woman?
The porcelain hole they squat over to relieve themselves. And trust me, they are not always quite this pristine.
This sour puss was everywhere. Right smack dab in the middle of a happy crowd. Just when I rounded the corner grinning. Blocking my way down the stairs. She was in the Atarurk Airport in the bathroom next to the mosque for women, pulling a sweater out from under her huge hanging breasts and replacing it with something else, maybe a grocery bag..these women were always making laborious adjustments in the bathroom. But that's not the larger problem as I see it.
This frowning heavy set woman liked me when I entered the bathroom. I smiled at her as I waited for my predecessor and she and a friend were making burka adjustments, no one acknowledging the overpowering stench. She smiled back and inquired: Iraq? Most people took me for Turkish, some for Spanish, but this was my first Iraqi. I should have just nodded yes; surely she wasn't bilingual. But I responded, USA , and her look turned disdainful.
Her friend came out of the stall. The group of women were all quickly heading to prayer, with the intensity of vultures descending on a carcass, and I don't think any one of the whole gang took time to aim. When I opened the door, I gagged. The floor was a slippery mess. I couldn't possibly keep the hem of my slightly shorter dress dry and it couldn't have been nearly as heavy to hold up as their garb. And I suspected that I was slightly more sprightly, weighing considerably less. I couldn't handle the smell and left without even trying to lift my skirt and maintain my footing on the slippery edges... even though I had a two hour line ahead of me through Customs. And then they drag these robes across the kitchen floor?