After fasting and increased charity, the holy month is over! Since Islam is based on the lunar calendar, my host family was excitedly waiting to discover which day Eid would fall on. On Thursday, it was announced that Moroccans would observe Eid on Saturday. I was excited to be a part of another cultural experience, but I was definitely curious to see what Eid would be like.
Eid in Morocco mostly consists of visiting friends, family and neighbors and enjoying lots of cookies. Everyone congratulates you on finishing Ramadan and wishes you good health, good fortune, and, if you are unmarried, that you may find a good wife/husband. My host mom was really excited that it was my first Eid and let me borrow several beautiful, fancy caftans. She really enjoyed dressing me up and we took lots of pictures. I think my host siblings thought it was silly, but I really enjoyed it!
After lunch, I went out exploring. The streets were full of people eating at cafes and small celebrations. On the pier, there was a huge carnival complete with rides and face painting. I personally enjoyed drinking water openly in the street, since it continues to get hotter and hotter! Little kids were all dressed very fancy and were taking pictures all around the city. The general feeling of contentedness was tangible in the city. I can only imagine how nice it must feel to be able to eat and drink as you please after a long month of abstaining and spiritual reflection. I wasn’t entirely sure what Eid would be like, but it was definitely more relaxed than I expected. To me, it seems that Eid is mostly about friends and family and enjoying the blessings in life. I am glad that I got to see Ramadan to completion. I think that it helped me understand Islam more fully and better grasp what Ramadan means to people who observe. While Ramadan made my experience different than that of those who study in Morocco for a semester, it helped me understand the role of Islam in Morocco on a deeper level and for that I am very grateful.
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<p>Chloe Zagrodzky is a rising junior at Claremont McKenna College majoring in Government and Leadership. When not reading the Federalist Papers for the 100th time, she can be found practicing her French skills, running or preparing to compete with her Mock Trial team. Her list of favorite things includes dogs of all shapes and sizes, reasonably priced mochas and creative Instagram captions.</p>