Since Islamic religious observances are based on an unadjusted lunar calendar therefore we get to experience Ramadan all seasons of the year. Every year Ramadan moves forward in the Gregorian calendar by about 10-12 days. So in about 30 years time we get a complete rotation of the month of fasting covering all seasons of the year. In the coming years, Ramadan will be observed in Summer, a time when faithfuls will be tested fully.
My best memories of Ramadan are those that involved considerable discomfort. Those were the days of hot summer months, sometimes without electricity and sun that seemed hotter than hell. I remember watching the second hand of the clock running unexceptionally slow as we waited for the azaan.
Photo by AAkshay Mahajan
Those days we lived in a Muslim basti and on the edge of our neighborhood we had a temporary ice vendor show up just minutes before the iftar time. He had one or two large block of ice wrapped in a gunny sack or straw to prevent it from melting. You hand over some money and you get some ice back, there was no measure in weight or length. The ice you get was all depended on your luck, rush, and his mood. For most people of that locality, with no access to fridge, that was the only source of cold water.
After a long and hot summer day, when you open your fast you just want to drink water. Not even Rooh Afza with falooda can match the taste of plain cold water. You don’t care about the goodies that your mom prepared in even hotter kitchen that just moments ago you were drooling over. But just a sip of water and you feel that you have never tasted the water so delicious before and all you want to do is drink glass after glass. Food will have to wait.