Eid Holidays Top

Eid in Karachi means food, family and fun

Sheer Khorma on the table for Eid. (Anya Farooqui/YJI)

Karachi, PAKISTAN – After Ramadan, the Muslim holy month during which the faithful fast from sunrise to sunset, comes the much-awaited Eid-al-Fitr.

The author gets mehndi applied. (YJI photo)

This is an Islamic holiday celebrated for three days to mark an end to a season of fasting, prayers and reflection and signals a feast observed with gratitude and joy.

The holiday is announced after the sighting of a brand new crescent moon in the sky – something which everyone waits for with bated breath.

Due to the presentation of the moon, Eid can take place across varied timelines between countries.

In Karachi, the moon was seen Tuesday night, known as chand raat (moon night), meaning that the next day was declared Eid.

Eid has many traditions, such as applying mehndi, eating delicious foods, collecting Eidi, and meeting family and friends.

This Eid is known in Pakistan as meethi (sweet) Eid due to all the sweet foods we eat during it.

The author’s hands decorated with mehndi. (YJI photo)

On chand raat, I went to an Eid bazaar, or market, which is a festival of sorts. Here, hundreds of people gathered to celebrate the end of Ramadan, eat foods like biryani and burgers – we celebrate in more ways than one! – and buy fun trinkets like bangles.

I had a great time getting mehndi (a reddish-brown dye also called henna), and the color darkened just in time for Eid the next day.

In the morning, I helped my mother prepare a traditional Eid dish, sheer khorma, which is made with nuts, milk, dates and seviyan (vermicelli), and then ate a giant breakfast with my family.

The author, Anya Farooqui, and her brother Zidane break their last fast of Ramadan this year. (YJI photo)

During Eid, it is traditional to meet as many relatives and friends as possible. From morning till evening, we visited six houses and met hundreds of relatives.

It is always fun to see my extended family, and in this way, Eid is like a huge family reunion. I was especially excited to get Eidi, a gift – usually money – given to children as a reward for fasting in Ramadan.

On the second day of Eid, many guests visited us at our house, where we hosted an extended 18-hour brunch. There is always lots of laughter and of course, lots and lots of food.

On the third day, we visited my mother’s relatives and had lunch at my aunt’s house.

Eid is always very hectic, but it is definitely an amazingly fun experience. I love getting dressed in new clothes, which is another Eid tradition, getting mehndi, seeing my family, and eating delicious food.

Anya Farooqui is a Junior Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

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