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My birthday party in a Yemeni household

-Mac (Houston, TX) [2010-09-29]
September 25th was my birthday. A few of my Yemeni friends made every effort to ensure that I had the chance to make a wish and blow out candles just like I do back home in the States. In this video, you’ll hear both the English and Arabic “Happy Birthday” songs.

David and Tik's final hours in Yemen

Last week David and Tik's two-month stint at the Yemen College of Middle Eastern Studies finally came to a close. During their final hours before heading off to the airport, both had some last-minute cosmetic preparations to handle. In the first video, David gets his beard and hair trimmed.

In the second video, Tik purchases a Yemeni shawl and Mohammad (the store owner) shows him how to wear it properly.

[2010-09-08. Editor's note: Tik Root is now back in Yemen, living the dream as a freelance journalist]

After one week of Ramadan in Yemen...


It’s been one week since the beginning of Ramadan – the month of fasting for Muslims worldwide.  Almost without exception, Yemenis over the age of 14 or 15 abstain from food and drink from dawn till dusk. In the video above, Jan breaks the fast in a bustling Yemeni restaurant among a group of students from the Yemen College of Middle Eastern Studies. Towards the end of the video, you'll hear the call to prayer - which is the signal that it's time to eat.

In the second video, you’ll get a glimpse of what the streets of Sana’a look like at 9am during Ramadan.

[2010-08-18]

Betsy Myers on Yemeni culture and friendships

After a month at the Yemen College of Middle Eastern Studies, Betsy Myers comments on her experience of Yemeni culture and friendships. Betsy is a senior at George Washington University in DC.

The Yemeni Guitar


The oud is about as close as one can get to a guitar in Yemen. Though it is most often played at weddings and other special events, it is not uncommon for groups of friends to enjoy the instrument in more casual settings. In this video, my friend Ali showcases his skills on the oud as well as his impressive singing voice (which is all the more impressive given the large quantity of qat stored in his left cheek).
-Mac (Houston, Texas) [2010-07-29]