Biology ended my Ramadan a little earlier and I spent a bit of today trying to look back and see how it has been this year. It is, as Is said in her blog about this month– more poignant than any other months as we tend to look back to the last Ramadan and see how we do this time round.
This time last year, I was too excited to celebrate the coming of Eid that I was not prepared the slap that was to come when my mother was hospitalised just a couple of days prior to Eid. And Eid/Raya then was mostly trying to deal with her looking all ill at the hospital ward. It was not a homecoming I was actually expecting. This time round, thankfully as I am typing this down nothing as yet of any tragic events hover up in the air and I hope for nothing of that sort.
I think this Ramadan has been a slightly better one than last year. We spent the first week breakfasting outside our neighbourhood, at a small surau in a close by town. We could have actually walked to the mosque nearby to our house where we hear the call for azan 5 times a day from our house. But hmm, how do I say this? That mosque, in our humble opinion is very affluent and ‘monochrome’ if I may put it that way. Iftar and ‘moreh’ ( post terawih supper) is usually quite elaborate and oh well, how do I put this? Quite feudalistic (?) where the LV totting datins and their business/politikus/socialite husband sometimes have a table of their own. Where you know who are the maids and who are the drivers and who are the somewhere in the middle and who are the, oh well.. like the who are the who like Horton Hears The WHO in Dr Seuss. You get the idea.
So in the small surau, the iftar spread was modest, majority of the congregation were bangladeshi workers, indonesian maids or flat dwellers, and a good mix of social rainbows of the upper class, middle class and no class like ourselves (:P). Social demarcations are starkly abolished by the prayer mats, the way Islam wants it to be and more often than not, I got humbled by the sheer glee of these foreign workers at their once a year experience at a buffet table, where they can eat good food for free.
We organised an awesome iftar session at our place with our closest friends and their kids which rocked the house down. But we love them to bits so we didn’t mind it at all. We did terawih together and the husband was the imam. At the expense of being a bias wife, I was actually honestly impressed with his recitations. It was fluid and he has memorised much more surahs than he did last Ramadan, almost halfway through the Quran now with his memorisation. Comparing his background and mine, that kind of put me to a more ‘face in the sand’ humbling moments. It teaches me that faith is not about inheriting it, but disciplining the soul to seek it. I have been taking faith culturally for granted.
( While typing all these down, I suddenly feel like having kuih makmur. Ape jer!)
The last significant bit this Ramadan has to be about the changing direction in our life’s path in a full swerve. The last two weeks or so we were both in hot seats as to where we are heading when this year ends, which land we will call our home next and what lies in ahead of us. We started the year 2009 with the mentality that once the year ends, it will be time to pack up our bags and move on to the next phase of our lives in another faraway land which we envisioned will be home for the next 3 years or so.
The perpetual nomads that we are, we were prepared for it to happen, mentally and physically. Until we took a sudden halt, tell ourselves ‘wait a minute’, anchor down for a while and let’s do the ‘adult’ thing for once in our marriage instead of gallivanting here and there and everywhere like the airy-fairy bohemic couple we have always been. At the moment, we are still at the halt stage, but what we do know at this point of time is that it is time to be a family in a family home instead of just a couple in rents. Age is catching up and we cannot be still caught in the ‘la di da’ stage where although it is fun and exhilarating, there would be a time when it does take a toll on our sanity, pockets and overall well-being. SO yeah, this Ramadan brings about all that realisation. Better late than never.
I am going for a break now to go back to my hometown and spend time with my family, friends and all things familiar ( or otherwise, I dunno.. ). If I have written anything untoward in this blog of mine be it intentionally or unintentionally, that’s just me being who I am in my dot of a place in this cyberspace. No harm intended, really! Honestly, other than those who have left comments and personal friends whom I know who read this blog, I don’t know who else reads it. Who reads all these rubbish anyway? Put your hand up!
Ahh…Ok I see some hands now. :P To you, you and you and all of you, I would like to wish a very blessed Eid, Selamat Hari Raya, Minal Aidil Wal Faizin. Till I find more rubbish to churn out as the toilet seat philosopher, I sign off now with TCHUSS!