So it's almost the end of Ramadan and while the Muslim world has endured almost 30 days of fasting, I've not even attempted one. I've never fasted a whole day in my life. I tried once when I was a teenager because my older sister decided one year on Ash Wednesday that we should fast like good Catholics. (She's always been a much better person than I am.) I don't know how she convinced me to do it. She's the rule following, organized "we should do this" one and I was always the slacker "okay, sure I'll do that", rule
Can you imagine not one, but 30 consecutive days of denying yourself not only food, but water, tobacco, sex and alcohol. Actually, Muslims are never allowed to drink alcohol, but I thought I'd throw it in there to emphasize how dismal Ramadan sounds. All this denial and self-discipline is supposed to teach patience, spirituality and humility. But have you been in afternoon traffic during Ramadan? There is very little empathy, charity, generosity or purity of thought when famished people are driving. In fact, Ramadan is the only time of year I have ever witnessed fist fights in the streets. So does appetence effect spiritual awareness?
Today is the day I'll find out.
7:00am I get up after trying to force myself to sleep in, but I'm old with kids, so I can't.
7:01am Smelling wafts of coffee Craig has brewed. Damn it, I really wish I could sleep in.
7:20am Morning coughing fit which are the remnants of pneumonia. A drink of water would wash these phlegm balls down nicely, but I don't.
7:30am Morning dootie happens right on schedule without the caffiene stimulus. (I'm sorry that you know my morning poo time and now so are you.)
9:00am I make bbq sauce and caesar dressing for a party later on.
9:10am I realize the great thing about cooking is tasting, but I can't so I recruit taste-testers.
10:00am Head to the grocery store to get a few things I need. Luckily I'm not hungry and the grocery store here doesn't have anything tempting anyhow.
10:40am Return home and make watermelon salad for a party in the evening.
10:42am Again, realize how hard it is to prepare food and NOT sample. What cook doesn't eat as they cook? It's just wrong.
11:30am The kids and Craig eat lunch and strangely I'm not even hungry. Did I mention I LOVE food and I cook/shop for/prepare and talk about food a lot during the day?
12:00pm I thought I would be starving by now. Not even a grumble.
12:30pm We head to the pool for an afternoon of swimming.
2:00pm The kids chomp down the snacks I packed because they're "starving". This is ironic since they've eaten a shit load of food already and I've had nothing all day.
3:00pm We return home from the pool.
3:05pm I'm shocked I haven't caved. This whole post was going to be about how I caved and was a raving bitch.
3:10pm Craig says the fast has made me calmer than usual. Which gets me thinking, am I usually a high strung raving bitch? Is that what he meant?
4:00pm I finish the Caesar salad for the party and I got the recipe for the dressing off the internet and hope it's not gross since I can't try it myself before the party where I will serve it to real live people.
5:00pm We arrive at our friends house. I induldge in a glass of water.
5:30pm Ok, I'm at a party. I'm not going to wait until 7:04pm to officially break my fast cause that would be unparty-esque of me.
5:31pm Muslims traditionally break fast with water and dates. Me? I break fast with cumin gouda on a cracker and red wine. Cheers!
7:05 The official call to prayer and cannon boom is heard throughout the city breaking the fast.
It sounds a little something like this..
(Oh and this is me accurately translating every word of what is being said during the call to prayer.)
(And yes, I'm positive the word "please" was said so many times because apparently Moroccans are second in politeness only to Canadians.)
So while Moroccans are feasting on sweets and tagines at their Iftar. We're going American style. BBQ chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, baked beans, watermelon, potato salad, pasta salad, mac and cheese.
So what what have I learned today? I would make a great anorexic. (Please note: I do not condone eating disorders nor do I or have I ever had one.) I've also learned the word fasting is completely misleading. Fasting is in fact a slow process. It should be called lethargic-ing or somnolent-ing or sloth-ing. It would be far more accurate. And finally I can absolve myself of my Catholic guilt I have carried with me since I was a teenager. But I did break fast with a glass of red wine and a cracker. Oh my god! That's just like communion. And I haven't been to communion since I don't know when. Damn it, this guilt isn't going away any time soon. I guess that's my epiphany.