Eid Sa’eed


دورات الترجمة هنا

Thoughts Outspoken

Shawal 1st, 1423

ABU-RISHA, Mohammed

Kul ‘am wa antom bi-khair

When it is Eid-Alfitir you usually go out to visit friends and relatives or take your children, if you have any, out somewhere for the sake of entertainment and refreshment.  During the three-day holiday of Eid, you find pleasure and happiness in the faces of all having fulfilled the orders of God by fasting the whole month of Ramadan.

Today, as usual for me in every Eid, I woke up late before noon, said kul ‘am wa antom bikheir” to my family and in the afternoon I went out heading to Amman downtown.  Well, this is one of my few idiosyncrasies, as I don’t have much passion for seeing people on this occasion.

On the way to the main street, where I could take the bus to Amman, you could see so many children playing here and there, laughing, shouting and running full of energy.  A smile would for sure be drawn on your lips, if you have a nostalgic nature, as you would recollect how you were once like them joining fiends and playing with them, after your father kissed you and gave you the usual eidiyeh, with which you could by a toy gun and play with your peers the thief-and-police or gangs games.  You would suddenly remember how you passed the golden gate of childhood and how those jovial moments of innocence started to vanish by the coming of years.  Well, you can see your little “you” when looking at these happy little beings, and there will cross your mind a strange idea that some day, those children, who are what you were, will be you.

This bright side of life however started to wither while I was proceeding to Amman downtown.  There you can find a confused and confusing world of dichotomies; happiness and despair, richness and poverty, the privileged and the miserable, all together walking into different directions.  The picture that I saw started to be more gloomy when I came across a child whose dress and shoes were not as I thought every child do wear in a joyful day like that of the Eid.  I gradually started to see the dark side of the Eid when my eyes saw a man teaching his around-6-year-old  (ostensibly) daughter how to sit and beg from passing-by people.  If you are clever enough, you will no doubt conclude that some children on the Eid have to work rather than play.  Here, I remembered a song entitled “Sympathy”.  I learnt it at school fifteen years ago.  The song truly mirrors life as it is, not life as we wish it to be, in such an occasion like that of Eid Al-fitir:

Now when you climb into your bed tonight

And when you lock and bolt the door

Just think about those out in the cold and dark

‘Cause there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

And sympathy is what we need my friends

And sympathy is what we need

And sympathy is what we need my friends

‘Cause there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

Now half the world hates the other half

And half the world has all the food

And half the world lies down and quietly starves

‘Cause there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

And sympathy is what we need my friends

And sympathy is what we need

And sympathy is what we need my friends

‘Cause there’s not enough love to go ’round

No there’s not enough love

No there’s not enough love to go ’round

My feelings of sympathy soon found someone else to go for.  His disposition taught me how one with dirty or torn shoes is more privileged and much luckier than this man who was begging in front of a mosque.  He had no feet.  The latter, still, I later on realized was much more privileged than another one I saw.  He was without legs!

In fact, the story with your sympathy starts with the last day of Ramadan when a preacher reminds you of the less-privileged people who did not have even food to eat or clothes to wear, urging you to be generous and to spend every penny you can and give for those people, whose silence was a treacle blinding one eye letting the other see a mirage: the brighter side of the Eid.  It makes you forget for a while that not all children are as lucky to have a father or mother as you have; not all men and women have a homeland as you have; not all people can eat and wear as you can; and, not all children were what you were in your childhood once as you have already fancied!

Your mind would now perhaps trigger a series of questions: How do those sufferers manage to survive all over the year? How do their children eat and dress? How many are those people? Do they form the minority of population, or are you an exception to their rule of cheerlessness?

If you are like me, careless and carefree, alas, you will never be able to ask yourself a more inescapable question: Why!  Why on earth do those people live in bitter conditions? Why do they suffer while people like you know how to entertain themselves?  We will not dare to ask more questions for otherwise we have to explain, at least for ourselves, why we luxuriously eat while others starve, why we feel warm while others feel cold, why we do enjoy our time while others are estranged by us in their own country and left alone deprived even of the blessing of hearing the usual greetings of the Eid.

All the above queries disturbing your mind, my dear friend, have one answer.  You can’t wipe out a tear; you can’t draw a smile on an innocent face, not because we, you and I, do not have much time to do that.  It is not because you and I have nothing to give to them.  It is not because you and I are helpless and can do nothing.

It is simply because there is not enough love …..to go around.

In the final analysis, who cares; it is a matter that doesn’t concern us the least.  Kul ‘am wa antom bikhair.

Author: aburisha

Translator, interpreter and international consultant