The sweet, piercing smell of frankincense and the beckoning sound of drums and bagpipes urged me last Saturday night to draw closer to where the crowds were slowly converging along the newly redeveloped Muscat Street in Singapore. Tucked at the heart of the Arab District, this street is the center of a five-day cultural activity dubbed as the “Oman Days in Singapore” which runs until today.
Tents were set up against the beautiful backdrop of the Masjid Sultan Mosque and a large red carpet was installed at the center for the night’s main highlight — the performance of the Al-Majd Folklore Dance troupe. A party was soon underway and members of the audience did not need any more coaxing and cajoling as they merrily jumped in and danced to the amazing sound of bagpipes, drums and vocals. Omani coffee was being passed around and I suppose some of us needed to dance off that extra caffeine.
After the performance, I headed to one of the frankincense-filled tents to take a couple of photos of henna tattoo artists and Islamic calligraphers showcasing their talents.
There was a long queue but my persistence paid off and I got my blog name, Galang Pusa, in beautiful Arabic calligraphy.
The Middle East is on my bucket list and getting a preview of this travel destination from the “Oman Days in Singapore” event was such a special treat!
- Oman Days in Singapore is a unique cultural exhibition that runs from the 6th to the 12 of November 2012.
- The Sultanate of Oman strategically occupies the south eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula. It borders the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the west; the United Arab Emirates in the northwest; the Republic of Yemen in the southwest; the Strait of Hormuz in the north and the Arabian Sea in the east.