Eid is all about caring and sharing. Kamal Kassim/Gulf Today
Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter
The ongoing hot season with an advisory from the authority to avoid direct rays of the sun has led many revellers to stay inside and enjoy the long Eid Al Adha holidays.
Many expatriates have devised plans on their own to keep themselves busy and happy rather than be lonely. Talking to Gulf Today, expatriates from different nationalities and backgrounds shared their thoughts on the celebratory programmes they were engaged in on the second day of Eid and would continue for the next couple of days.
Shahid Khan, a Pakistani expatriate and a long-time resident of Dubai, said that in the past he was travelling during Eid to meet his relatives back home but this time he had to stay back due to some urgent engagements in the city. “As an expatriate from Pakistan we have to celebrate Eid with our relatives and friends to invite to our place and sometimes go to others’ homes to exchange Eid greetings and sacrificial meat as a religious obligation,” he said.
This year the weather is not only hot but the humidity is so high that one starts sweating within a couple of minutes while outside. “Keeping in mind the current weather, we only stick to minimum visits to some close relatives and friends while handing over their share of sacrificial meat which is a must-do on Eid.
Besides this, we preferred to stay home on the second day of Eid and kept ourselves busy with various activities, including making phone calls to many families and friends scattered all over Pakistan as today it was the first day of Eid there,” he added.
Mokhtar Rustom is a media consultant who hails from Syria. He has been living in the Emirates for a long time and has many relatives and close friends residing in the country. “Eid, be it Eid Al Fitr or Eid Al Adha, has seen exciting times for the whole family, especially the children waiting for the long holidays to fulfil their huge list of wishes,” he said, adding that “we have plans to visit some relatives and families of our close friends at their places to exchange Eid greetings. The major engagement as part of the celebration is to watch a couple of movies in cinemas and take children to Modhesh World at Dubai World Trade Centre where not only a number of games are available under one roof but it is also one of the best places to spend long holidays with children.”
Khalil Majdalawi, an Arab expatriate and working as a PR consultant in Dubai, has been in the emirate for over 17 years. He said they are celebrating Eid with much fun and fanfare.
“I am planning a staycation in one of the resorts at The Palm during the Eid holidays while also attending a number of activities in key malls like The Dubai Mall and Dubai Festival City to have a quality time during the holidays, which offer a great escape from busy life in the emirate,” he said.
Adeel Khan, another expatriate from Pakistan in Dubai, has for last couple of years been preferring to stay at home and inviting friends to stay during the Eid holidays and enjoy some dishes to further hone their ‘bachelor cooking’.
“The Eid celebrations are meant to be with family and relatives but for us living alone we missed these on such occasions. The best thing is to keep ourselves motivated and engaged with some activities on these occasions, we have to meet old friends and spend time together. Making phone calls to relatives and family members during Eid is another major activity for people like us,” he added.
Eid Al Adha is one of the second biggest celebrations for Muslims all over the world. Expatriate communities like Pakistanis in the UAE have been celebrating the joyous day in different styles but the purpose is to spread happiness and share the true message of Eid Al Adha with others.
Traders in the local cattle market located in Sharjah have been advising early customers of sacrificial animals for Eid Al Adha to wait till next week as the shipment of livestock from India arriving soon.
The residents of the UAE celebrated Eid Al Azha with great fervour and excitement. They started their day on Sunday with prayer, then most of them headed to meet and greet their friends and relatives.
Their Highnesses the Members of the Supreme Council, the Rulers of the Emirates have conveyed their sincere greetings on Eid Al Adha to President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, wishing him good health and further prosperity and glory to UAE people.
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