International Food Day by Mohammad Marie

I agreed with my PhD colleagues to do International Food Day. I woke up in the morning and started to cook Palestinian food (Melokhia). I am not the best cook but I tried to do my best… was wonderful day and all of us enjoyed different dishes. We tried Welsh, British, African, Saudi, Oman, Malizian and Palestinian food. I preferred the hot Malizian chicken and the Welsh cake. I love Welsh food since I have come to the UK. My Welsh friend showed me how to do salmon and I love fish pie. We always visit each other and we learn new stuff.

I would like to thank the school who always support these activities and Katie and her team look after the fine things and this will increase trust between the PhD student family. We share the office with many countries and the school encourage us to be supportive of each other. We always exchange our ideas about many things and explore the cross cultural mosaic. I think if the world had one culture or one colour this will be less exciting and I consider my study period in Cardiff one of the most exciting periods in my life. I daily discover and learn new things about the fascinating Welsh culture, I enjoy learning about things that Welsh people had before us as a developing country. Many things touched my heart in this city; last week I said to my friend I will miss Wales when I’ve got my PhD and return back home. I visited a female farmer yesterday with my friend; I liked her farm with horses and sheep. She talked from her heart and she knew the importance of land for any farmer. She talked about the challenges of sheep food and lack of grass due to this winter. We don’t think about these challenges when we drink milk and eat meat. We don’t think about climate change as farmers do.

In the Palestine and Arabic region we have a good food culture. We invite relatives and friends for food as customs, especially for weddings and in the fasting month (Ramadan). Food is part of Palestinian culture and many biggest dishes are registered in the Guinness Book of Records such as: Tabula and Konafa. Rice and bread is the main course in homeland as this may be easier to cook for many people at the same time. At weddings people cook for hundreds or thousands of individuals and rice may be an easier choice.  People bake bread because many refugees in camps receive flour bags as a monthly donation from the United Nation. The farmers used to plant wheat and this makes bread a good economic choice. These reasonable choices enable people to invite others for food which is part of folklore and tradition.

I hope we will do International Food Day again and these activities help us to become closer to each other. Food will increase the understanding of multiple cultures. It was a good opportunity to be away from our projects and study.

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