The Hardest Ramadan So Far

My Eid dress

I have another Ramadan in Germany this year (2013). This time Ramadan starts on early July and ends in early August. And yes, it is during summer time where the day is so long. The fasting time is around 19 hours daily!

I have to do my early eating (sahur) at around 03.00 AM and break my fasting at around 10.00 PM. The first adaptation that I have to do is: my working hour. Fortunately, I have flexible working hours. I have targets to deliver. So as long as the targets are achieved on time, nothing matters.

My adapted working hours start at 01.00 PM to 08.00 PM. With this schedule, I can have enough sleep after my sahur and go home right on time for preparing my breakfast.

The hardest thing in my fasting this year, it’s not the long hour. It is the heat that makes it hard. In the dry climate of Germany, the sweat is easily evaporated and we get dehydrated. This is the condition that I want to avoid. So I have to wear long sleeve shirt and pants to keep my body temperature. Of course it looks weird, during hot summer day, I opt to wear long clothes!

Another difficult situation, or perhaps my biggest temptation is seeing people eating ice cream in a hot summer day. For me, this is really hard. The colors of ice cream and the coldness effect are very tempting. But of course I have to be strong. The stronger the temptation, the more proud I become in overcoming it.

Although it seems hard to do fasting during summer, it takes less than a week to get use to it. And I feel surprised that in general I don’t have any significant problem in doing it. I even enjoy it especially during weekends, there is always invitations for breakfast. Or in weekdays, me and my friends use to go to Islamic Centre to have breakfast. And all of these are for free! So I could eat good foods for free for almost the whole month. Who doesn’t want that??!!!

The Eid
Some of the foods.
After having a month of Ramadan, it’s time for celebration. In Bremen, there is an Indonesian Islamic group that has a praying place (musholla). The celebration for Indonesian community is centered there. And again I am so surprised to find that there are lots of foods!!! It seems that every housewives bring their homemade meals. They are a lot!!!

Empek-empek, my favorite dish.

I think this is the first time that I miss leaving the month of Ramadan. The closeness and solidarity among Indonesians and Muslims have made this Ramadan so special to me. I really enjoy it. Eid Mubarak everyone!

Celebrating Eid with Indonesian community.