Sunday, July 14, 2013

Ramadan 2013 - Day 4, Ezdan Mall and Sohour at Katara

So after another weekend morning in the office to while away the time, I had my usual afternoon nap then cooked an iftar at home. I'd agreed to meet a friend at Tim Hortons after the evening prayers, around 10:30pm, so I went earlier in the evening to Ezdan Mall to wander around to see what’s open, as well as spend some time studying some Arabic with a (decaffeinated) coffee.

Out of the malls I've seen recently Ezdan Mall seems to have taken the Ramadan theme more seriously than the others. They had laid out some majlis-style seating throughout the mall:

Had trays with dates for people to snack on. Bottled water was also available.

TV screens were showing video clips accompanied by readings from the Qu’ran

And posters with hadiths were on the walls.

They even had a small stand at the food court with Qatari food (sorry, no pictures of the stand, it was being managed by numerous ladies in abayas and it's considered impolite to take pictures of them)

There was also a charity activity center being set up with singing and games to entertain children. It started around 10pm!

For those of you still wondering what's new at the mall, there were only two more stores open (Collezione and New Yorker) and a couple of things in the food court look close to opening.

After chatting with my friend and leaving the mall I received a text from another friend that he and a couple of other guys were having sohour at Sukar Pasha at Katara. As it was “only” 11:45pm I headed over to Katara. Despite it being almost midnight the traffic around the mall was very congested and it took me around a half hour to get to Katara.

Katara had a nice outdoor display of lights.

Sukar Pasha, the Turkish restaurant at Katara, had expanded for Ramadan by setting up a huge enclosed area, probably seating around 150 people. It was packed full of Qataris all enjoying meals and/or shisha (I’d say mostly shisha as the place was pretty smoky). I met up with my friends and ate a small plate of mixed mezzahs, and we left around 2am. Despite the late hour there were still people at about half the tables by the time we left, despite the fact that fasting would begin in a little over an hour.

Needless to say it's a little weird going to sleep at 2:30am and getting up at 6:30 to go to work. It looks like nowadays I'm getting more sleep during the day than I am in the evening!

Okay, no more about malls. To get this back to a more religious theme next post I'll tell you about Islam and the Prophet Isa (Jesus).

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