I met the Imam of the village and Khamees the Rat at about the same time. I don’t exactly remember now – it happened more than six years ago – but I think I met the Imam first.
But this is not quite accurate. I didn’t really ‘meet’ the Imam: I inflicted myself upon him. Perhaps that explains what happened.
Still, there was nothing else I could have done. As the man who led the daily prayers in the mosque, he was a leading figure in the village, and since I, a foreigner, had come to live there, he may well for all I knew have been offended had I neglected to pay him a call. Besides, I wanted to meet him; I was intrigued by what I’d heard about him.