Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Last year, all the Muslim staff held an Iftar on our school field, and invited everyone and their partners and families. We all gathered just before sunset, to find big circular tables set with cloths and lanterns, plus dishes of dates and cups of water for the breaking of the fast. After the call to prayer and the short sunset prayers, we all helped ourselves to a very good buffet, and then the adults ate and chatted in the deepening dusk, while the children scooted about in all that open grassy space. Very relaxed and mellow. A lovely departure from the general busy-ness.

This year, the senior students held an Iftar on Monday, raising funds for their prom, with due proportion to charity. Staff were invited, and we were all proud of how well they organised this event: I'm not good at estimating crowds, but there were probably 300 people there, and it all went perfectly. (This time the round tables were on the basketball court!) A bonus was seeing former students back to visit. Good food and plenty of it, and every senior student on hand to set up, serve, help and clear up. Way to go.

And yesterday (Tuesday) the Muslim staff repeated last year's lovely evening. The evening was perfect, with a light breeze to lift the humidity. Habibi came, and staff brought visiting parents, brothers and sisters, and introduced them all round. I saw children I haven't seen for a year - babies now toddlers, toddlers now able to kick a ball without over-balancing, shy little ones now romping confidently with all comers. Former colleagues came to visit, and new staff saw new colleagues in civvies and without responsibilities. You can't put a price on the thoughtfulness and generosity that goes into something like this.

Oh - and before I forget- there was an interesting mix of music coming over the speakers: religious songs in Arabic and English, including some Islamic Hip-Hop from a Pakistani band (I think). I can't say that the Hip-Hop did much for me, but I like the progressions of Islamic music, and I also liked the little English song that started 'The sky is blue like blue bubblegum......' Doesn't that just sum up the feeling of a carefree summer morning?

(Another first last year was the 'Festive Tea' when Christian staff returned the compliment in December. I missed it =( because I had a rehearsal, but I'll be there this year!)

1 comment:

Anne said...

That sounds fabulous!
I love that we can get involved in these traditions when we are abroad.