I was born and raised as a muslim in a 100% muslim Country (they say, what do I know :P) so definitely eid is a big deal. For me eid right now is remarkable because I get to walk in a memory lane which is so colorful and beautiful. For us it all begins two days prior to eid where by our granma plucked henna leaves, grind them and made a paste for me, my sisters and cousins. We would put it the whole night and decorate our hands for eid.
I don’t remember an Eid that started without attending the morning prayers. After the fajr I washed my hair with granma, wore brand new cloths, shoes what not and march to the packed mosque where we would be lucky to get a spot except for those who save space after fajr like granma. Any how back then we attended women’s mosque so we sit there and just listen to khuthba from the Male’s mosque across the road which I find bit funny when I think of it now.
After prayers we come home to the grand tea with Famous kulhi boakibaa (fish pie),banana, Boiled eggs, Foniboakibaa (sweet pie made up of flour) and of-course kiru sai (milk tea) was a must still is I guess. My uncle and aunt (I am very glad they still continue the tradition even though grandparents have passed on) come with some of the cousins to greet grandparents as they lived with us. After the tea grandfather would slaughter a hen or a chicken I dont really know so mom and grandmother could start to prepare for the lunch. Or just after the tea we all would travel to a near by island to visit family friends and celebrated there.
If we stayed back, for me and my sisters that would be visiting hours. We go to my dad’s side grandparents. We go there exchange Eid greetings, show each other our new cloths as all our aunts, uncles and their kids except for one uncle lived in one giant compound with tiny houses along with grandparents. So we would have some sweets, dad would hire a driver so that we could visit all his aunts, uncles and cousins we couldn’t even keep up with. We use to go from one place to another till noon and come back with bellies that looked like huge clay pots.
After noon prayer, we use to have lunch as a family plus or minus guests with that chicken or hen curry, Dhaal, Rice, Custard, Fiya satani (onion salad), Kekki fani (masala tea without milk), Masbon’di (another version of fish pie), Saagu bodibaiy (sago pirini). Then we would watch a movie till Asr. After asr we would put all our cool cloths back on and go for a walk or go to watch traditional items and have some fun before the sunset where we would begin to prepare for the next six days of fasting. One might say that is nothing compared to the fun you had including all “fen kulhi” etc etc. (Nothing wrong with it)
Yes you are right, it might sound very boring but for me and my sisters those memories meant and means everything. The time we spent with family from our dad and mom’s side on Eid were priceless. Those things taught us importance of family values, tradition as well as giving. We all have our differences but that is one day we get to rejoice and unite with all the blessings we gained from Ramadan. Eat on same table, exchange greetings, attend prayers, smile and laugh together. For me that beats every other kind of fun out there. And I am so glad the eid I am having at home after being away for years is similar to that except for the part we are missing the grandparents. Alhamdhulillah