Ramadan Kareem!

In the words of NPR:

Ramadan celebrations are especially famous in Egypt. But this year, the Egyptian government has added a new twist to the holiday by turning back the clock just for Ramadan. That way, people end their fast an hour earlier than they would otherwise, even though the total number of hours they fast will not change.

We had a long conversation about this last night, my CASA friends and I.  Somehow it seems like cheating, to let everyone go home from work an hour earlier than usual, just so they’ll have more of their pre-Iftar naptime.  On the other hand, as former CASA student Tim said weeks ago, “When August and Ramadan get together, it’s never pretty!”

Ramadan, of course, is the Muslim holy month of fasting, 28 days without food, drink, cigarettes, sex, swearing or arguing (at least in theory) from first light till sunset, followed by all-night feasting with family and friends.  It will be interesting to see how Ramadan is different in Egypt than it is in Jordan.  I have noticed already the Egyptian tradition of Ramadan lanterns, brightly colored glass and chrome hanging lanterns of various shapes and sizes.  Stay tuned for more!

Tonight, we’ll be looking for one of those food tents they mention in the same NPR story, so stay tuned to see how that goes!

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