Eid in a pandemic….What’s different?

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How does Eid make you feel?

For some unexplainable reason, a lot of us just derive innate pleasure from Eid festivities. From wearing new clothes ( you always feel fly when you look good ) to eating wonderful meals. And the meat….Oh the meat !! Chin-Chin and other snacks. These CEOs are responsible for many runny stomachs. Is it the Durbar ( Hawa )? The colourful regalia on the horses and riders? Is it the love? The genuine free-spirited joy with which we greet each other after the Eid prayer?

This is how we remember Eid. The laughter. The food. New clothes. The Durbar. Eid prayer. Visiting family and friends. The feel. The vibe. It always has been a beautiful experience. But this year, many experienced Eid differently. Imagine an Eid without Durbar. A festivity many traveled from all over the world to witness. Imagine an Eid where families weren’t able to visit each other or exchange food. Imagine Eids where children did not run around the streets in their new clothes and flashing their mints ( new notes ) obtained from elder ones and older friends and family. Imagine an Eid spent indoors. Imagine Eids where we had to pray individually at home. Imagine Eids without handshakes and laughter.

For many…these happened for the first time in their lifetimes. The young and old alike experienced Eid like they never had. For the first time in their lives, some people could not attend the Durbar. Some mothers could not send food to their inlaws and friends. Some brothers could not visit their loved ones. And some mosques we’re left to echo. In places where the adhan was called for prayers we only heard silence. A painful, deafening silence. All thanks to one pandemic. A pandemic whose end we can’t predict. A pandemic we still aren’t sure how to handle. A pandemic which has crippled economies. A pandemic that has brought the world to it’s knees…

Imagine a child born a year or two ago. Where he was too young to understand what happened in the first few years of his life. As the years go by…and Eids continue to go on as they have this year. When they experience these quiet Eids.. What legacy will that child learn?

Amira Jafar

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