Yes yes, celebrating birthdays is bida (innovation) and prohibited. But, I’m not celebrating my birthday. I’m just telling you that today is my Lunar Birthday (according to the muslim lunar calendar).
One of my childhood friends is visiting her family from abroad. She wants her children to grow up how we did, playing on the road, between the houses and in the masjid during Ramadan. She remembers the big gang of us, all walking to the masjid and back…the race to finish the Tarawih prayers in a half hour when the younger boys lead (ahem! We start Isha (night prayer) at 7:50pm so Tarawih at around 8:00pm and my brother finishes at…9:20pm…so at least one young boy grow up).
I miss those days too. The communal iftars (breaking of the fast) and dinners. (I guess this is a real subject for another post…in my grandfather’s lifetime, after and now).
Now we don’t have that much people and young people coming so really it’s just the brothers and maybe a couple sisters who go for Maghrib (sunset prayer). At sunset, one breaks the fast and then prays Maghrib. (I am told, if you are Shia, you break the fast when it’s completely dark…maybe half-hour after Maghrib prayer. We break when the sun starts setting, the colours start changing).
My mom and I don’t go to the masjid for Iftar and Maghrib. We don’t have the energy.
So at the masjid, it’s just a little iftar with whatever people bring, be it just dates, water, soft drink or whatnot (my brother carried a danish ring yesterday…special grocery trip…yes we love Entenmann’s, we saw it, we bought it, he decided to go the next day to buy another to carry to the masjid…how often do you see Entenmann’s in Trinidad at a reasonable price?).
Then after they pray Maghrib, they all trek back home to eat and then we return for Isha and Tarawih. Maghrib time is about 6:26pm and by the end of Ramadan it will be about 6:11pm. We try not to overeat between Maghrib and Isha because then we will be rather sleepy and sluggish and it will be harder to make it through the Tarawih prayers. Ha! I mightn’t even make it to the masjid. And we’re washing all the wares *after* Tarawih. Note, this is my family. Who knows what other people do.
But my brother and his family got invited to an Iftar in a neighbouring masjid. Maybe I can give my sister-in-law mom’s point-and-shoot camera to take some pictures of the food…hehehe. Also, I heard tell of someone wanting to have an Iftar in our masjid…so there’s hope. EXCITEMENT! I still hate washing dishes.
Oh, you’re wondering what we do for dinner. Well it depends. Friday and Saturday there is neighbourhood barbeque on sale so yesterday, we bought four boxes and had them not boxed, but each food separate…I think there is still quite a lot left. Thursday mom cooked fry aloo and bodi (separate) in the morning and when we went grocery (the first time we bought the Entenmann’s) we bought panini bread (?) which looked like sada so we could save on the cooking. So tonight, we will probably have leftovers..:-)
Today is the 3rd of Ramadan. Last night we prayed the 3rd Tarawih. This morning, we had our 3rd Suhur and we are currently keeping the 3rd fast.