If you don't know what Ramadan is, here's a crash course: Ramadan is a month of the Islamic calendar, and basically an abso-freaking-lutely amazing holiday that lasts an entire month. Most Muslims fast from dawn until sundown every day (with some exceptions) for the entire month, which means we don't eat, drink, smoke, or anything like that during the day. There's a lot of history and theology-related stuff tied in with Ramadan, but I won't bore you with that. If you're interested, you can let me know and I'll direct you to some links. Anyway, that's basically all you need to know. Moving onward....
RANDOM RAMADAN-RELATED OBSERVATIONS:
- Dates. I just can't seem to make myself like dates. They're like the raisins of the Arab world and, to be completely honest, I hate raisins. You're supposed to start your day and end your day with dates, but I hate them so much I usually take a more American route and go with potato chips.
- Never sleeping. During Ramadan, particularly during the last ten nights, it's practically expected for you to run on the bare minimum amount of sleep. And I don't mean your standard eight hours. I mean hard-core, legit, three hours or less every single night. If you don't screw up and accidentally fall asleep right after Fajr (dawn prayer) like I do, that is.... I've taken to literally never sleeping, as in, staying up all night up until suhoor (the pre-dawn meal we eat to begin our day of fasting) because I'm afraid I won't wake up. Missing suhoor is bad, bad, bad.
- Eating. Once it's time for you to eat, one of two things always happen: 1) you stuff yourself to the point of bursting with all your favorite junk food, thus gaining a bunch of weight, throwing your entire digestive system out of whack, and feeling all lethargic. It's just bad. Or 2) you look at all the food and go "O.o What the hell is this stuff!?" I find it really hard to choke down regular food after a whole day of fasting, which I suppose is a good thing. But you really do never get used to it.
- You're always wet. I know this sounds ridiculous, but before we pray, we make ablutions, or wudu. It's basically like taking a bath in the sink (or in the shower, if you prefer). To add to this, I take a lot of showers during the day even though I never do anything, so I never get dirty. Why? Because it's a great way to kill time while you're waiting until you can eat again, and the smell of chocolate-flavored body wash is like an orgasm in a bottle. But these two things combined make it difficult for a person's hair to ever not be hanging limply and wetly by their shoulders (or if you're me, down around your waist xD )
RIDICULOUS THINGS I DO TO KILL TIME DURING RAMADAN:
- Take a lot of showers (see above).
- Put on strawberry and fruit punch flavors of lipgloss because they're vaguely reminiscent of eating food.
- Procrastinate on the computer.
- Watch underfunded 1990's family romcoms with my little sister; yell at her to go take her popcorn in another room, thank you very much.
- Plan what I'm going to cook for iftar (the meal we eat after sundown to break our fasts). Usually I'm too lazy to ever actually cook anything.
- Complain to my internet friends about exactly how many hours, minutes and seconds I have left until I can eat.
I was thinking of adding a "Day in the Life" type section to this post to describe exactly what goes down during Ramadan, but I didn't want your eyes to bleed from the sheer length of it. Let me know if you guys would be interested in that at all, and I'll put it up. Okay? Good. *salutes*