Do you have to cover your face?

“Do you have to cover your face there?”

I’m not sure why I was surprised by this question about living in Qatar, but maybe it was because it was posed by a man from the African continent and I thought people from there knew more about Islam. 

But this was the conversation at the rental car pick up during my latest business trip.

“No,” I said. 

“Can you drive?” he asked.

“Yes,” I replied.

Apparently it’s not just Americans who think of Saudi Arabia as representative of the Middle East.