As the days go by I spend more and more time thinking to myself “I don’t know, I just don’t know”  What is Ramadan?  I’m not really sure.  I know it is both a difficult time and a wonderful time for some.  The theory is that from sunrise to sunset, if you are observing Ramadan, you don’t eat, drink or take medicine – I did it the first year I lived here -mainly because I was such a wimp I wanted to be accepted by my neighbours!  It wasn’t that bad to be honest – but I wasn’t doing any hard work – neither was I sleeping by day!  I did feel the hunger and thirst and of course in the end I was so chuffed at having survived it!
Once the sun goes down it is “breakfast” time.  So, here I am this morning, bleary eyed (actually more black-eyed as I have those tell-tale dark circles under my eyes).  Across the street workers have been hammering away since around 10.00 last night and 4am this morning they started pouring the concrete on the roof – really wish I had one of those video cameras that can work in the dark!  They will probably finish by around 8am.

My questions to myself are

  •  What’s it all about?  What’s the point in having Ramadan if you are just going to change day into night, if you are going to work all night and sleep all day?  That’s Ramadan?  Well seems to be here!
  • Are these guys observing Ramadan?  They had a fine “breakfast” last night.  They worked in the cool of the night.  They will go home before it gets hot, shower and sleep until “Breakfast”  Seems to me that’s the best work they have all year!
  • Once again I am back to the question….”What is Ramadan?”
  • As for the people around them – such as my humble self and my guests – we will still have to stay awake all day and go about our daily business.  Do these guys care they’ve kept us awake all night?  Well, the answer to that is “No” because their answer is “It’s just one night!”  It’s always “just one night!”
  • But the $50 million dollar question for me this morning was “What the hell does the Immam’s (probably wrong spelling but it means the guy who calls Muslims to prayer 5 times a day) brother think he is doing?…how does the Immam and his family justify this work?  Because they are on-site supervising and giving orders for this particular building……don’t know if it is their building or they are just overseeing the work.  Wonder does this Immam ever give a sermon (I hear him every Friday preaching over the loudspeakers to everyone but have no idea what he is saying!)….does he ever give a sermon on consideration for others or even how to observe Ramadan.

You see….I don’t know….I just don’t know…….maybe somebody out there who knows the Koran might be able to tell me if there is anything in it about putting yourself in the other person’s place……or neighbourly consideration……brotherly love?????I really wish my ability to shift my focus was better!   Maybe if I had done a better job of focusing on positive stuff earlier in the day yesterday…..last night might never have happened!!

Mara