Thursday, August 8, 2013

Ramadan and feast culture in Egypt

Egypt has a unique taste of everything. It’s not just an ancient country lives in modern days. Or the pyramids with a city view. I’m talking about a different taste of things.
Ramadan and the feast are things in the Islamic culture. However, in Egypt they have their own taste that you will never find at any other Islamic country.
Today is Eid Al-fater or feast of breaking fasting in many countries. Here are the reasons why I like it so much in Egypt.

1- The majority of Egyptians are Muslims but even though our Christians brothers and sisters join us in celebrating the month of Ramadan. Muslims and Christians decorate the streets of colorful paper decorations.

2- Ramadan is all about sharing with the others and helping the poor, almost in every neighborhood there’s a table of food for the poor. People who love charity they set up the table, cook food and make drinks and serve it for free. I wish they do this all year long.

3- Some people stay on the road with bags of food and at the breakfast time, if they find people walking home or riding cars, they stop them and give them food for free. And that happened to me a few times. I was late for breakfast time and a stranger stopped me and gave me a bottle of water and a meal. I told him that my house is a few minutes away and he should save the meal for someone else. But he insisted and said all passersby should have a meal.

4- My favorite reason in Egypt we celebrate Ramadan with Fanous. Fanous is a lamp to light darkness. The story goes back to the year 969 when an Islamic leader Al-u’izz Li-Dinillah came to Cairo Ramadan 7th. It was a dark night, people of Cairo went out to the dark streets and each one carried a lamp in their hands. And ever since this day lighting the dark streets with Fanous became a tradition. Muslims and Christians buy Fanous as well. Now a days Fanous is a beautiful piece of art, a decoration and a toy for children. In Egypt Ramadan can’t be Ramadan without a Fanous. And it’s a unique thing only to be found in Egypt.

Breaking of fasting feast
Egyptians celebrate the feast not just for breaking fasting.

1- In the first day of feast parents and the older give money to young children and their children no matter how old they are. It’s called Eidia.

2- New cloth. Everyone should buy a new cloth and usually parents buy it to their kids.

3- Families get together for dinner and young people go out to parks and walking by the Nile River.

4- Balloons, balloons sellers make good money this day. Everyone buy balloons.

All of those reasons make this time of the year very special in Egypt.

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