Saira got up early today in excitement. Today was the much awaited festival of Eid-ul-fitr. The festival marked the end of Ramadan – an entire month of dawn-to-sunset fasting. Ramadan is the month where Muslims around the world focus entirely on the Lord and thank Him for his blessings. During Ramadan time, they pray a lot, fast and try to bring out the best in them by following simple things like not getting angry, not lying, being patient, helping the Needy. Saira’s entire family including her parents, uncles, aunts and her elder cousins had been fasting during the holy month of Ramadan. Now it was time for the celebration of Eid!
Saira smelt something delicious. Her tummy rumbled. She ran into the kitchen. Her mum, Humaira, was making traditional sweet called ‘sevvaiyan’ – toasted sweet vermicelli noodles cooked in milk and dried fruits. Humaira hugged her, and Saira loudly greeted her with the traditional Eid greeting – Eid Mubarak.
Saira opened up her curled up palms and showed them to her mother. The beautiful henna pattern she had got done on her hand last night looked gorgeous. The night before Eid is called Chaand Raat, which means, “Night of the Moon.” Muslims often visit bazaars and shopping malls with their families for Eid shopping. Girls put henna on their hands and get colourful bangles.
It was time for Saira to get ready. All the friends and family were getting together for lunch. She ran to her room. Her father Saifeel had kept a new dress for her on the bed. Saira was surprised and jumped with joy. Every year her parents got her new clothes to wear on Eid. She went and hugged him, joyfully wished him Eid Mubarak ! She gave him a beautiful ‘Happy Eid’ card she had made for him a couple of days ago.
Everybody in the house was ready. Just in time. Guests were pouring in. Everyone together offered Eid prayers, known as Eid Salat and greeted each other with the traditional hug of friendship. On the lunch table, enjoy special Eid lunch with various types of sweets and desserts.
Now was Saira’s favorite part of Eid. On Eid, the kids receive money in cash called “Eidi” as a gift by every elder in the family and relatives when they visit them. On Eid day kids are allowed to spend their gift money (Eidi) however they want! Saira and her gang of friends collected their Eidi. It was an enormous task! Then they all huddled up together to count their money and discuss what they should buy with their Eidi. Saira knew already what she was going to buy – the new astronaut Barbie doll.
After everyone had left, Saira flopped on the bed. She was tired. She closed her eyes to recap what all had happened in the day. She already couldn’t wait for Eid next year.