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Ramazan and Karachi.

Ramzaan Mubarak to everyone!

With the conflicting moon sighting out of the way, let’s all welcome the holiest and perhaps the most unifying month for all Muslims, that time of the year again where all of us are in high spirits and feel closer to Islam.

These thirty days are not only special, they are meant to teach us and guide us. They’re challenging and clearly not just about ‘starving’ rather about abstinence and patience. Loving and remembering the Creator and feeling closer to Him.

Well then. I won’t sermonize any more for I don’t consider myself superior in any way with knowledge or spirituality and I also believe faith is a very personal thing.

So l literally loves Ramzan! And I think Karachi does too. Let me give you what goes around the city during the holy month.

Firstly, Yes, there IS the obvious reason of having two very special meals introduced to us Hungry Karachiites ,the Sehri and Iftari. Only during this time can you gobble down fried food almost everyday, get special requests happily accepted by mommy and enjoy Quality [eating together] time with family and friends.

So before the fast and the macho-style feast is the all night cricket matches that are neither bound by a decent place or age limit. Only after the ringtones go off, do the ‘players’ return home for the grandiose meal.

Sehri is never complete without the careful planning carried out by mothers and wives to make sure to wake up on time for the preparation to the last food gulping seconds which are justified on the grounds of the HEAVY menu, including Parhathas, omelets, Allo ki katliyan, lassi , yogurt, chai and basically everything that you can find from Burns Road to Boat Basin. And then with the fajr azaan soothing all minds and bringing the tummies to the rescue, the city sleeps. Well not really, the students don’t really have much time to sleep, neither do the working class. Just the ladies and the laziest.

So the days go by differently for everyone, and given the diversity in this city it’s not possible to cover everybody.

First and foremost are the seriously-religious people who offer all their prayers in the mosques, are regular in their tarawees, recite the Quran and are engaged in all the religious activities. Try not to cross their way.

Next are the newly-religious people, they are the ones who may slack throughout the year but will be on their Best behavior during this month, be it the ‘careful’ use of words to the break in the staring sessions at malls.

“the 9 to 5 guy”, basically the office guys who dread the snack-less afternoons at the office. I really feel for them since their condition can be understood when they are on their back home, Roaring away.

recently-relieved phal wala, [fruit sellers]. I have a soft corner for these guys, during Ramzan they easily sell everything at double price.Well, my mom isn’t happy about that.

Then there are those living on the edge ; the tailors aka the Darzis. These are the guys who get the traumatized by the ladies [read: Aunties] to get their clothes on time with the perfect sleeves,length, get the point.

The Iftar Primetime. Everybody is happy. Somehow politics takes a back seat and the food shows are everywhere! How can they do this to all the Rozedars? Please lets not talk so much about pakoras. Please Zubeida Apa. Please.

The Aunties. They’re pre-Ramzan preparations are clearly visible at every Iftar party around town, with their Designer Lawns, high heels and covered heads [It’s ramzan-remember?]. They’re already fretting about their Eid dress and how it’s getting harder to manage their busy schedules. *Sigh*

No matter who we are, let’s make the most of this month.

So happy Fasting & Feasting!

P.s I’m confused- whats the right way to write:

Ramazan? Ramadhan? Ramzan?


Posted by on August 2, 2011 in Life as a Karachite


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