As Ramadhan approaches, families are lighting up houses with lanterns or Fanoos to mark their spiritual journey. There is joy in the air as people shop and go through decorations, gifts and collectables. Many of the accessories have the theme of the crescent and the star. A tradition that was practised in Egypt has become symbolic and iconic.
Sarah al Jarrah said, “The shops are with unique products. The choice of lanterns is vast. Some are meant for outdoors, while more detailed ones can be used indoors.” As she bought wooden trays with Arabic calligraphy, she added, “What I buy will be used for different purposes and style. There is furniture too such as short tables. Most people want a complete makeover for the holy month. The accessories for Karankashoo are already available, and people are already purchasing the products. But I think I will wait because there might be more choices later.”
There is joy in the air as people shop and go through decorations, gifts and collectables. Many of the accessories have the theme of the crescent and the star. A tradition that was practised in Egypt has become symbolic and iconic.
“I think the hanging lanterns were also used as decorations but also with a particular purpose: to provide light on the streets in the olden days,” said Wafa Sulaiman.
“Maybe the person who used to wake everyone up in the neighbourhood on time for suhoor, the ‘Saharati’, also needed a lantern in addition to his drum as it must have been dark at that time of the day,” said Ali Jawaish.
Of course, the current lanterns attracting the crowd are not oil lamps but battery-operated bulbs.
“With God’s grace, I hope to make this year special as so far, everything seems normal. So at least we can have family members come over during weekends as school students also can have fun and be with their grandparents and other family members. People tend to stay up late. Having everything back to normal is our hope,” said Wafa Suleiman.
The month of fasting is an opportunity to practice the values and discipline in addition to bringing in an understanding of other people’s plight who are less fortunate. Ramadhan is a spiritual journey and is also about caring and togetherness. However, we are also conscious that we still have Covid-19 variant Omicron around, said Ahmed al Balushi.
Um Omar says, “Yes, we are all with great gratitude looking forward to the fasting. Many might feel all these accessories are new trends. Even fabric and dress materials are available in the market for the occasion. They have classic patterns and designs. I have been maintaining a practical outlook. Nevertheless, I too have bought accessories to usher in the beautiful days of Ramadhan.”