Monday, 17 September 2007

Ramadhan in Mekah

Our first day of Ramadhan was in Mekah. We left Yanbu at 7.00 am on Thursdays by car and reached Miqat Juhfah two hours later. We continued the journey to Mekah at 10.00 am and arrived at 12.00pm. We parked our car at Tan'im mosque and then took a taxi to Haram Mosque. At that time the cost was 20SR per van. We heard two weeks later the cost increased 10 times which was about 200SR. At first it was so surprising, but later we understood that not only the cab rental price was increasing but almost everything including groceries and foods stuff. Even the hotel rate rose up to 900 - 1000 per night.

It almost Dzohor prayer when we reached Haram. People were walking to the mosque and we were walking opposite their direction towards to the hotel. Alhamdulillah we had booked our hotel rooms earlier through a friend, or else we will put our self in big trouble since the hotels were fully booked during Ramadhan and the room rates were hiking. Travel with 4 young children ages 7,6,5 and 2 years old was not easy. Our movement were very slow and of course we must always keep patience.

We started Tawaf (circle the Ka'abah) after Dzohor prayer end. It was so crowded with pilgrimages and the weather was so hot. My daughters couldn't bear with the situation and keep on asking when we are going to finish. (For non-muslim readers : Tawaf means circling Ka'abah for 7 times).

Next, we proceed to Mount Safa to do Sa'ei (walk between Safa and Marwa for 7 times). It was already Asar time. So we decided to perform Saei after Asar prayer.
Obviously umrah during Ramadhan is totally different from Umrah in the other months especially during the day. We will become tired and exhausted quickly since we are fasting. To my understanding after all experiences we have gone through, performing Umrah or Hajj required physical and mental strength. During tawaf we must know how to slow down and when to move quickly.While during Sa'ei, especially during Ramadhan, we can quickly get thirsty. At the end of Sa'ei you'll feel like you have totally lost all your strength and what comes to your mind is a glass of water will be so help full. I had almost fainted, both arms became numb and I feel like to throw out. Luckily I had my khadamah to help me to look after the kids, I just sat on the floor and tried to catch my breath. My husband help me to find some water and sprinkled on my face with hope that it will help me to refresh.

Suddenly the thought of Hagar(r.a) came to my mind. "Probably this is how she felt when she had to look for water for her son Ismail(a.s) running from mount Safa to Marwa". Allah is the only companion for her and also for us.

To Allah we bestowed and to Him we seek forgiveness.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

First week of Ramadhan

Working hours during ramadhan has been shorthened from 8 hours to 6 hours daily. Either you come to work at 7.00 am and go back at 1.00 pm in the afternoon or come at 10.00 am untill 4.00 pm.

This is great. I choose option one, I can go back early and then, definitely go to sleep. No, I will not doing that. I will go back early and then spend my quality times with my daughters. That sounds like a good father. Hehehehe.

Today is the fourth day of Ramadhan. Alhamdulillah, everythings goes well and my son start his first fasting today. He told us, all his muslim classmates but him were fasting and he felt very embarrased. Actually he want to start it earlier, even during the first day of Ramadhan but on that day, went to Mekah for Umrah and we afraid that he could not make it due to long hours journey. And yesterday, he had a swimming lesson at the school so today is the best starting date for him.

He performed his first Umrah on the first day of Ramadhan. We did't planned it at first place. Everythings comes up to my mind when I saw a young boy wearing Ihram at the Miqat. Suddenly I asked him whether he want to wear Ihram like me and perform umrah and the answer is "Yes". Umrah ritual is not an aliens to him. He used to follow us Tawaf and Sai'e but this time he will do it again in Ihram.

Alhamdulillah, praise to Allah, everything goes well and we had a pleasant journey.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007


Kullu Am Wa Antum bil Khair. Ramadhan Kareemm.

Ramadhan will begin tomorrow. This is our second Ramadhan in the Kingdom and my third ramadhan outside Malaysia. Ramadhan was celebrated with full of joy by the local and Muslim expat here. People greets each other "Ramadhan Kareem" when they meet. My mail boxes was full with ramadhan greetings from colleagues and friends.

A good things about stay in Yanbu was, it is near to Mecca and Madinah. People took advantage from this by performing umrah or ziarah. Every weekend, we can see buses full with man in white ihram dress going to Mecca. This will increase towards the end of Ramadhan.
To all Muslim out there, we wish you Ramadhan Kareem.

Saturday, 1 September 2007


Malaysia has celebrate her 50 years of Nationhood yesterday. 31st August 1957, Malaysia or Malaya was declared independence from the British Colonialization. Many thanks to the fighters and warriors who fought for the independence.They sacrifice themselves for the sake of their future generations. Many of them were not remembered as part of the history or may be their name were listed as traitor to the British Government, but to me they are true warriors.

To all Malaysian out there, love our country as how our warriors did. Learn from the history and march to glory.

May Allah bless Malaysia.

And tomorrow is my birthday. 2 days after the national day.......hemmm, I'm getting older.

Allah, forgive me on my wrong doing.