Words create worlds

Eid Day

In Celebrations on August 28, 2011 at 8:54 am

It’s around 6am, the sky is beginning to light up with brilliant colors. The house smells newer, cleaner, better.  The night before, my mom took my sister and I to get henna on our arms and legs for the celebration. After hours of my mom repeating ” hadha qaaqina hadii kale barri baad foolxumaanaysiin” – don’t move or you won’t look good tomorrow. This was both the best and the worst part of Eid. As a child, being asked to sit still was a nightmare but it wasn’t Eid without henna.

The morning sky was beautiful as I walked to the kitchen to find my mom preparing Cambaabur (with dish) which was sweet, really sweet. She saw me, asked me to wash up and wake up my sister. I did as told. Eager to put on our new clothes, my sister and I washed up fast. We ran to the room and got fully dressed. My mom warned that we should eat breakfast before putting on our new clothes but we swore we wouldn’t make them dirty.

On the morning of Eid, people attend the morning prayers and back home you could hear the Adaan or call to prayer. We were especially excited that year because we were allowed, for the first time, to attend prayers in the big park where thousands prayed in really long lines. We begged for almost the whole month before. Pleading that we were old enough and all of our friends were allowed to go.

It was a short walk to prayer and it was beautiful, I felt like a grown up. After prayer is when the real fun started. First, each kid visited all their relatives homes where they were expected to give each child “xaqal ciideed” – which was money. There was no set amount. Each family gave what they could give. After we collect enough money to spend, we  went into town.

The whole city turned into a theme park. There were hundredths of stands to play for prices and lots of rides. There were swing beds that could hold three or four of us at a time and we’d get on with our friends screaming as it wasn’t up and down.  There were big trucks that took us on rides around town – 20 kids, maybe more, would get on the back of a truck and sign songs as we drove around the city.

We’d stay out the whole day but in a city where everyone knew one another, we were surrounded by family and friends. We’d return home at sunset and the whole family would gather at my grandparents house for dinner. It was my last Eid home and It was perfect.

Each year, I wish to have an Eid like that here. One that feels so great and memorable. This aim gets me really excited each year about Eid and I believe helps me enjoy it each year.



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