Saudi Arabia from my Google Analytics (Click on picture to enlarge)

Since the president of Nigeria left for Saudi Arabia over six weeks ago to treat his ailing self, I’ve developed a new interest in that country called Saudi Arabia. Well, not really. My interest in the country actually predates my country’s recent and now (in)famous healthcare dealings with them. My fascination  is very old indeed. The country holds a kind of fascination for me as an exotic tourist destination that so many people adore as a kind of spiritual homeland. Not me though. I’m just mostly intrigued by the large stone cube in the centre of the city of Mecca called the Ka’abah which was said to have been erected by Abraham in the olden times. In many Islamic tracts, on youtube and on some illustrated maps of the world, I have also read that the site of the Ka’abah is also the literal centre of the world.It is said to be equidistant to all corners of the world. This should go on to explain why that is the direction that every moslem faces when they pray. How true is that?

I don’t know if I can ever make it into the country in my lifetime, seeing that I’m not a moslem, nor an intending pilgrim, but it would have been a fascinating trip to get close to that prehistoric monument, touch it, and imagine what it would have been like in those days when faith did not always include killing a fellow human being. It would definitely have been a place to visit on a sight seeing tour. Well, thinking about it now, I wonder if there was ever really a time in history when faith was totally without blood and gore. Even father Abraham was said to have once been asked to slaughter his own son to prove his faith.

In any case, here was what my Google Analytics turned up as statistics of readers from that famous country. Only five hits between August 2009 and today. Interesting. And contrary to my earlier thoughts and wishes, the readers are not from Jeddah where the president of my country now resides (perhaps in a hospital bed), but in Riyadh. It is very sad to realize that the president has not been reading my thoughts and opinions after all, but well, I’ll survive it. However, this knowledge now begs the questions: Who were they who read my blog? What did they read? Did they enjoy it? Was it censored?  And would they be coming back soon? Of course, I will not be getting answers to those questions. Or will I?

Cartoon from Used by permission.

Salaam Alaikum: Peace be unto you, folks in Saudi Arabia. Please take good care of my president if you know where he is. And if you really do know where he is, please drop me a line. If you come across him anytime soon, tell him to send me an e-mail of acknowledgement. Or at least place a phone call to the BBC, or at least a popular morning radio show in Nigeria so we know that he is still alive, agile and in charge. Tell him that, contrary to what anyone around him, countrymen are really pissed, agitated, and running out of patience right now. They believe that if he were in office during Christmas time, the United States might not have placed our country’s name on a security list of countries with suspicious citizens. I mean, when you think about it, it’s not the fault of the United States that whenever President Obama could have tried to call the Nigerian president to discuss the matter, the phone would have rung for a while, and then either gone into voicemail, or been picked by a woman who spoke English with a really muffled foreign accent. I know you understand, and that you care enough to help. That is why you have read my blog for those five long times. Thank you very much for listening, and for your support. I look forward to your response soonest.

Ma salaam.

Love from Edwardsville.

(NOTE: That drawing from Ofilisketches is used by permission. Please feel free to print as many copies as you want, and paste on the streets of Riyadh and Jeddah, just in case someone comes across him and has useful information for us. This is urgent, please. Thanks.)

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