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Monday, October 16, 2006

Different Folks Different Strokes!

Notice board outside the restaurant for the common people :)
- of jobs, house-share and political views

I am not a Muslim, but staying here in the Middle East, I follow their tradition of fasting during the month of Ramadan.

I break my fast in two different restaurants.

One is in the hotel, where they serve sumptous buffets. There along with the natives, I stuff myself silly with food to make up for lost time! :)

The other restaurant I go to is frequented by the working class people. There, I sit along communal tables with the common folks to break the fast over a simple plate of food of very modest quantity, a small bowl of soup and a glass of juice. This is probably what the customers of this humble restaurant can afford, and this is about what they have everyday. Little difference from their everyday life.

As I understand it, fasting during Ramadan is an exercise for Muslim to feel first hand the sufferings of the less fortunate and therefore learn to be more compassionate towards others. However, some people here get around having to face the fasting agonies first hand by sleeping in the day and staying up at night. A complete reverse cycle of daily routine. Which means they can eat while they are awake at night, but sleep when the stomache grinds. That doesn't quite serve the purpose of the fast, does it? That's not to mention the stuffing themselves with food before sunrise and after sunset.

Different folks different strokes indeed!

1 comment:

michael said...

Here in the Middle East, when someone gives you a cup of tea, receive it with your right hand, not with both hands. The left hand is considered 'undesirable' for some reason. I find this receiving of a gift with only one hand very uneasy, as we are conditioned to receive with both hands in Chinese tradition. Again, different folks different strokes!