Tuesday, November 04, 2003

A moment in the eye of the storm. 

Riverbend of Baghdad Burning offers us a moment in the eye of the storm, and a description of Ramadhan. Her writing speaks for itself:

After the soup, comes a whole procession of often traditional foods… maybe I should post the recipes. There’s so much food because the ‘futtoor’ is more of a daily celebration than it is an ordinary meal. During previous years, we would spend almost every day breaking our fast with various family or friends. This year is different because the security situation doesn’t allow for traipsing around Baghdad or other provinces on a daily basis. It’s also not the same because, under normal circumstances, our ‘futtoor’ gatherings often last well into the night, sometimes past 12 am, before the group breaks up to go home.

The neighbors are often a big part of the month. If they’re not dropping by to sample futtoor, then they’re sending over a plate of something for you to sample. We also get together to agree who will be sending food over to the local mosque to feed the mosque keepers and the Imam, and to arrange who will be sending what to the more destitute families in the neighborhood. Ramadhan is the time of year when we put aside neighborhood differences (like the fact that Abu K.’s dog howls at anyone who goes down the street), and combine culinary skills and a general feeling of empathy.