April 13th, 2013| Topic: RaMbLeS | 2


Last week was not a good one for François Gérard Georges Nicolas Hollande, the President of France. The Eurozone is in a mess, his allies are being investigated for secret bank accounts, and now this—someone ate his camel!

Earlier this year, the country of Mali had presented President Hollande with a gift camel, after France had taken the initiative to chase out Al Qaeda militants and to liberate Timbuktu from the yoke of radical Islamists.

It was quite an eventful week for the camel, too, understandably, beginning with its verbalized unhappiness over its own presentation ceremony in Mali to the foreign president. It screeched (or did what camels do in times of dissatisfaction) all the way through a vote of thanks proposed to Mr. Hollande by a local official. The Hon’ble leader de la République française, now a proud camel owner, could barely be heard above the camel’s din declaring, “I will use it [the camel] as a means of transport as often as possible.”

Well, that didn’t quite work out.

Mr. Hollande tried, in vain, to import the animal to France, but was stymied at every turn by officials unrolling bureaucratic red tape who would not relax the country’s strict vaccination laws. The president relented, worrying also about the fate of a camel in a cold clime.

So that was that.

But now, to rub salt into the wound, the presidential camel has been devoured in what seems to have been a major international diplomatic faux pas.

Minister of Defence and Veterans Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, broke the news about the fate of the camel the other day. Mr. Le Drian announced that the camel caretaker and his family apparently wasted no time slaughtering the dromedary for a طاجين (tajine), a Berber dish like a stew. They say while a mature camel’s flesh is almost inedible, that from young animals (like our presidential beast) is tender and perfect for a tajine.

A gift … eaten!

Then a further hiccup occurred when a certain Mr. Said Toureg, a resident of Timbuktu, claimed that the camel had actually been stolen from his house to be donated to Mr. Hollande!

In any case, as one report said, “[N]ow the turbulent camel has been laid to rest in a big pot, after locals in Mali could not resist its gustatory delights.”

I must note that French presidents have, in the past, successfully taken possession of live animals which have then been relocated to ye olde république, among them an Asian elephant (President François Mitterrand), a couple of Bengal tigers (President George Pompidou), and a few bison (President Valérie Giscard d’Estaing). All of them have spent their European retirement in Paris zoos. None of them, except for the aforementioned unlucky specimen, have been eaten, at least as far as I’m aware.

Mistreating a gift!

That’s happened before.

For God so loved the world,
that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish,
but have eternal life.
John 3:16

For by grace you have been saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves,
it is the gift of God.
Ephesians 2:8

Jesus Christ, the gift of God!

This one … you nailed to a cross
by the hands of godless men
and put Him to death.
Acts 2:23

But in God’s sovereign plan, even that worked out for our good.

He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross,
so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.
1 Peter 2:24

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
2 Corinthians 9:15

What a gift!






  1. Eric April 14, 2013 at 5:37 am

    …talking about a gift eaten, I am reminded that on the other hand, God’s Gift _is_ to be “eaten”.

    So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.” John 6:53-56

    Well, in that case, may we feast on Him! Hey, Abe, how about a blog on what Jesus really meant by that? 🙂

    • Abe Kuruvilla April 14, 2013 at 8:12 am

      And of course, “This is my body …” and “This cup is the new covenant in My blood ….”
      Thanks, Eric.


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