Unexpectedly — between sessions at my week long Gymnastics Coaching Camp in Yemen — I was invited to a wedding.
We walked over to an unassuming building. Inside were at least two floors filled with hundreds of feasting guests.
Tradition is to eat as quickly as possible, with only the right hand.
From there we walked over to a massive wedding hall.
Guests arriving on time — hours early as everything starts LATE here — relaxed, chatted and chewed Khat.
Khat consumption induces mild euphoria and excitement, similar to that conferred by strong coffee. Individuals become very talkative under the influence of the plant. … Khat can induce manic behaviors and hyperactivity
Khat is so popular in Yemen that its cultivation consumes much of the country’s agricultural resources. It is estimated that 40% of the country’s water supply goes towards irrigating it …
An estimated 10 million people globally use khat on a daily basis …
… Not healthy.
It darkens teeth, but doesn’t destroy them like betel. Yemenis have bad teeth, but it’s a consequence of not going to dentists.
… Oh yes. You might have noticed that there is not one woman or girl anywhere to be seen. Yet there must be at least one woman secreted away somewhere.