Skip to main content

Eid al-Fitr

We think it might be the end of Ramadan tomorrow. The announcement has been made that Eid al-Fitr, the Festival of Fast Breaking, starts on Sunday 20th September this year dependent on the sighting of the moon (actually based on astronomical calculations; I was quite disappointed when I found out, crushed my visions of groups of learned personages peering at the moon from hilltops every night).

For Muslims, Eid al-Fitr is a time to dispense charity to the needy and get together with family for celebratory meals and to exchange gifts, with special Eid prayers being said at the Mosque early in the morning on the first day of Eid.

For us expats it's slightly less meaningful, but it does mean a couple of days off from work, a week off school for the kids and being able to eat, drink, chew gum and smoke in public during daylight hours again now Ramadan is over.

It's also an opportunity for ex-pats to get to know their Muslim neighbours better. The kids and I took chocolate brownies over to our neighbours last night as an Iftar gift, which Alpha had told me was the done thing (Alpha has cultural presentations at work so tends to be an overbrimming font of knowledge when it comes to local customs). Some of our neighbours were obviously surprised at the sudden appearance of a Westerner brandishing tupperware and smiling manically while trying to utter mangled Arabic phrases: I can't have been that bad though as some of our kinder neighbours reciprocated tonight with some delicious rice and chicken dishes.

If you want to reach out to your neighbours and do a better job than I did in explaining why you are trying to give them food, here are a few handy Arabic phrases for the Eid period:
  • Kul 'am wa enta bi-khair - May every year find you in good health
  • Eid Mubarak - Blessed Eid
  • Eid Saeed - Happy Eid
  • Taqabbala Allahu minna wa minkum - May Allah accept from us, and from you
Eid Saeed, y'all.


Maria said…
I'm gonna take some goodies to my neighbours too. Nice idea, thanks YLM.
Anonymous said…
Phonetic pronunciations please to help the ignorant. Hey, it's Christmas! Eid Saeed!

Popular posts from this blog

Apologies for being incommunicado this week and hope none of you out there are too distraught not to be receiving the usual almost-daily MotV missives. The reason for the silence is that I'm up to my neck, metaphorically-speaking, in research papers for my first grad course assessment. This experience has made me realise how rigorously un-academic I am in my thinking. It has also illuminated how reliant I am on red wine in order to get through endless evenings typing furiously on my laptop, not to mention the fueling of increasingly colorful curses that I feel obliged to aim at the University's online library system which consistently refuses to spit out any of the journals I'm desperate for (I refuse to believe this is 100% due to my technical incompetence...)Oh well, if this is the price one has to pay in order to realize a long-cherished dream then it's not all that bad... No one ever said a mid-life career change would be easy. Wish me luck!

Recommended & the Mahiki dance-off

My GFs and I went to Mahiki last night, great fun as usual but made me feel a bit old; it seems that Thursday night is the playground of the just-past-pubescent. Oh well. Good tunes though, so whatever.In between taking over the dancefloor - the youngsters may have youth on their side but frankly that shrinks to insignificance in the face of two decades of clubbing experience - one of my GFs and I got into a conversation about why so many people are full of bull.It appears that many people we come across are content to live their lives in a superficial way, skimming the surface of what life has to offer and equating the ownership of stuff (cars, houses, boats, jewelry, designer clothes) with happiness. They converse in terms of status, strut their possessions as a measure of their own self-worth, take themselves far too seriously, are quick to judge others, easily annoyed, complain a lot about very little and their worries seem to far outweigh their joys. Personally, I think all that…


Following on from the realisation that my lungs are filthy and if I don't give up the smokes soon I face a life of wheezing at best, off I trotted to see the charming Dr T.

Dr T, who's charming by virtue of the fact that he's less jaded than the other doctors in the surgery (in other words, he treats patients as if they're human beings with a right to NHS services rather than annoying fraudsters trying to gain sympathy for imaginary illnesses) promptly put me on potentially habit-forming drugs to get me off the evil weed. Something doesn't feel quite right about this but since I'm so pathetically grateful to have a doctor who's willing to give me more than two seconds of his precious time, I have acquiesced to his demands.

Anyway, this wonder drug is called Champix and promises to have me merrily chucking my smokes in the bin in no time. Or it will if I can get past the possible side effects, the highlights being abnormal dreams, nausea, flatulence, snoring, …