Thursday, July 26, 2012

Ramadan

Before we came, we were advised by a few people that Kent had met that the kids and I should stay in the US until after the month of Ramadan.  Well, we're here and now we really understand why!  For Muslims, this is a special time of year when they fast from sunrise to sunset.  It is also a month of celebration for what they have and of charitable giving to those who may not have as much.  Because of the fast during daytime hours, most stores are closed until just before the fast breaks and daytime work hours are sometimes reduced or postponed into the late evening hours.  For example, one of the AC units that cools our house had a compressor that quit working.  The workers showed up one night with the new compressor at 7pm, informed us that they had to go eat, and came back to work a few hours later.  They worked until 2am!  Activities last night at Discovery Square (our market area) didn't even begin until 10pm and the malls in Jeddah are closed all day and open all night!  A lot of expats here leave the compound during Ramadan, so there are not a lot of people here.  Since we're new and trying to meet people, that's a little tough.

In addition to Ramadan, it is hot and humid here so people are just not outside during the day.  I'm writing this at 11pm and it is still 33 degrees Celsius (equal to 91 degrees Fahrenheit).  My weather app says it "feels like 41 degrees Celsius" - or almost 106 degrees!  Ben, Whitney, and Caitlynn all went to "summer camp" at the recreation center this past week mainly so they would have a chance to meet and play with other kids - a plan that worked out well.

We are enjoying it here, though, despite the heat and unusual hours that people keep this time of year.  Kent took me out for a Sunset Cruise on the Red Sea for my birthday.  It was just a short 1 hour cruise with a small group, but it is really was beautiful.  A couple of people in the group are divers and they both told us they had seen dolphins on some of their diving expeditions.  Tonight, for a family night out we went to the rec center and some of us played on the climbing wall while others tried to master ping pong and pool.  I beat Kent in pool the very first time I played him!  (Kent - you are not allowed to comment on that game!)  He creamed me the second time though - I don't even think I got a single ball in a pocket!

1 comment:

  1. So fun to read about your adventures! Kept them coming :)

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