There is not a time that I miss Riyadh as much as I miss it during Ramadan, because Riyadh would always turn into a picturesque “Arabian Nights” canvas full of love, piety, and community spirit. My memories pertaining to Ramadan are filled with friends and loved ones, feasts to no end, staying up all night in community tents playing cards and watching movies, successfully talking teachers out giving us classes because “oh, we can’t concentrate!”, my parents making knafeh for random people, and shopping till very, very late at night.
This might as well deem me heretical in the eyes of some, but the spiritual experience of Ramadan comes to me through the social experience. In Riyadh, experiencing the two extremes in society- an abstinent, pious and pretty grumpy society during the day and a hyperactive, lively, and authentic life during the night- was a humbling experience
Amman, of course, is a completely different story, which I will not even talk about because I get depressed during Ramadan in Jordan.
Add to that, my daily skim-and-scan of Jordan Planet didn’t help. This bit of news on Sabbah’s Blog is pretty depressing. I was looking forward to the Saudi blogosphere’s accounts of Ramadan in Saudi Arabia. Well, at least Farooha found a way around it, which makes everything slightly better. I mean, seriously, so much for minor freedom.