Published March 9, 2020 by rochellewisoff

Today Pegman hitches up his camel for a trip deep into the Saudi Arabian desert, an oasis known as Wadi ad-Dawasir. There is no street view, but more than a few photospheres. Feel free to wander until you find something that appeals to you, then write up to 150 words about it. Sharing, reading, and commenting is the meat of a photo prompt, so please participate. If you enjoy yourself, please encourage others to join this community.

Thanks for playing, and do your best! Thanks to Josh for hosting.

To read other stories, click here.

Two weeks in a row for me. 😉 I debated over this one. But being one day after International Women’s Day, it seems right to speak out for women who have no voice. 

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 150


We met in Toronto Pearson airport, where Clemira sought asylum. Her dark eyes broke my heart. She grasped my hands in both of hers. “Thank you for your help.”

Two years before I myself fled Saudi Arabia after my father killed my sister for going out in public without her Hajib. He poured acid on her while she slept. In my dreams I still hear her screams.

“I will do whatever I can.” I kissed Clemira’s scarred cheek. “How did you manage to escape?”

“The new law enabling women to drive saved me.” The plucky seventeen-year-old mother of three squared her shoulders. “My passport is up to date from our vacation. My brother—a rare sympathetic man—bought my ticket. I packed my things while Akbar slept. Then I took the car and drove to the airport.”

“Aren’t you worried about your children?”

“Akbar won’t beat them. They are boys.”

13 comments on “SILENCE OF THE LAMBS

  • Oh wow. This is stunning, Rochelle. The treatment of women everywhere is shoddy (there are stories of families in the floating villages of Kowloon not bothering to tie safety ropes to their female children, of Indian families counting daughters among their possessions, etc), but the Arab world is especially cruel and violent. I have often wondered if part of the rationale behind the hijab was to hide facial bruises. Well-told and perfectly appropriate for International Women’s Day. Always a pleasure to have you contribute. Now if we can just get Karen back 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Josh,

      Since my husband served two tours in Saudi Arabia and told some stories of the misogyny he saw, I couldn’t be silent. After watching some personal testimonies of these women who’d escaped, I REALLY couldn’t be silent. Ironically, one video I watched where a woman in a public place shared about the freedoms women have in S.A. in the background sat a woman in a full burka.
      Come back, Karen!



      Liked by 1 person

  • There was some talk of restrictions on women loosening in SA – as your story illustrates, the rules on women driving are being relaxed. But many of the Arab states still do terrible things to their women. I wonder where this misogyny comes from. Heartbreaking, shocking, all the more for it being inspired by truth. Well done, Rochelle. Your empathy shines through as always

    Liked by 1 person

  • Realistic Fiction does describe the Genre of this story for sure. Unfortunately, it happens World wide when it comes down to the treatment of women and children. While serving throughout the Middle East, I saw many examples of this and wondered how long it would take for the women to finally say “No More”. They are making progress, though it’s still slow. Good story.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Jan,

      As you know, some of this story is based on things you’ve shared with me from your own experiences. It seems to me the extremists in every religion tend to discount and abuse women. What? Are we not also made in God’s image? Okay…off my Rukhel box. Thanks, m’luv.


  • Dear Rochelle,

    Bang on, once again and told in your special way. Everyone has already said what can be and I think we just need to thank you for bringing forth these stories of more than just survival.

    Shalom and lotsa proud of you love,


    Liked by 1 person

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