I met my Bedouin friend Hemaid several years ago when he invited me one morning…
Bedouins are a large part of the Middle Eastern population. They live in all Middle Eastern countries as well as North African countries, numbering in the tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands in each country.
The Bedouin culture differs from that of other cultures found within the same countries. They have different ways of life, a different sense of community and sharing, a greater emphasis on hospitality. You can visit a Bedouin family in Egypt, then walk down the street and visit an Egyptian family and have two very different experiences. For example, Egyptians tend to socialize inside their homes like we do in the West. Bedouins spend much more time in open areas, talking with family and friends in their yard or in homes that are wide open not only architecturally but socially.
Perhaps their physically and socially open homes are part of what give Bedouins a strong sense of community. Perhaps they are a result of their strong sense of community. Whatever the case, unlike other cultures in the Middle East, Bedouins have a great sense of sharing with each other, of helping each other, of togetherness.
In this video, the second in this series on Connect the Cultures, Hemaid, a Bedouin of the Muzeina tribe in Egypt’s South Sinai, tells us more about the Bedouin sense of community.