Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Eid ul Adha has come and gone

As I near the end of three years in Saudi Arabia, I think back to my arrival in the Kingdom on the night of 16th November 2011. At that time, Hajj had just got over, and in the post Hajj scenario, I never got the chance to see how the Eid ul Adha is celebrated. This year, however, is my third year in the Kingdom, and what I saw is that the evening before sees a lot of activity and visiting shops etc. Almost all the villagers in the village are out on the roads in their cars. They visit shops, supermarkets and so on, while their male members are busy getting hair-cuts, buying new clothes and accessories and so on.

The same was the milieu in the village on the evening before the Eid! The next day, the shops stayed closed through most of the day as the locals dispersed to their own homes after the Eid prayers. It was only after sunset that a few service-oriented offices had opened, and that too, very sparingly.

Over the course of the day, and for a day more after that, we continued to attend to our duties in the hospital; we received quite a few packets of goat's meat from doctors who had performed the sacrifice. My colleague Dr. Afzal - a Kashmiri doctor - prepared fried mutton pieces - a dry, tasteless offering that I could not reject, yet, did not enjoy much. Our mutual Kashmiri resident doctor friend Dr. Tahir prepared a traditional Kashmiri dish called Yakhni and sent a large amount for both of us (Dr. Afzal and me). We had this the next day, and by jove, it was fantastic.

In the last three days, I completed three CME courses offered by the Ministry of Health of the Kingdom. These courses were all offered ONLINE and concerned preparedness of the Ministry in case of an epidemic of either the new Corona virus or the Ebola Virus and what we must do to save the patients as well as protect our own selves. Each course took about an hour and a half to complete successfully.

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