Ramadan

This is my first Ramadan experience. During Ramadan, here are the things that usually happen:

* All our Muslim brothers and sisters fast from 4am (around the time of Fajr, their first prayer of the day) until sun down (around 7:15 pm here in UAE because it's summer). I heard that Muslims in Sweden always have a hard time during Ramadan because Sweden, at this time of the year, has 21 hours of daytime.
* Working hours are shortened in consideration to those who are fasting during the entire month. Usually, it's minus 2 hours for private companies and 3 hours for government institutions. And since I'm working in a government school, our usual 8-4pm schedule became 9-2pm.
* As a sign of respect to those who are fasting, all non-Muslims refrain from eating in public places. All restaurants and cafes are closed during the entire daytime. Some restaurants are open but are covered and allow take-away orders only. Dine-in orders are allowed right after their 7pm prayer.
* It's a holy month full of acts of generosity, spirituality and self-cleansing. It's a month full of sacrifices. I salute our Muslim brothers and sisters for being highly-devoted in everything that they are intended to do during this month.

During Ramadan, you will usually hear the words Iftar and Suhoor. Iftar is their term for breaking their fast. Iftar is served right after sun down. Their 7pm call to prayer signifies the start of Iftar. So it's like dinner for us non-Muslims. Suhoor on the other hand is the meal taken before their first prayer at 4 in the morning.

Here's my first iftar with my high school friends during the first weekend of Ramadan. Mexican bondat talaga!



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