Alhamdulillah, another year has passed.
And now we meet again.
I had the opportunity to experience 4 days of Ramadhan in the Holy Makkah last year.
It was an unforgettable experience, and I would love to repeat it again and again, InsyALLAH.
What I love about fasting in Makkah was the free food.
Yes, free food.
On the first day of Ramadhan, as we were walking back to our hotel room after Asr prayer, we saw a bunch of people gathering around a car. As we got closer, we saw one man distributing packed food to the crowd.
Excited by the whole scene, we joined the crowd and reached to the man for the food.
If this were to happen in Malaysia, we must be thinking, 'Oh, it's the rich man giving out free food to the poor'.
But no, in Makkah, everyone gives out, and everyone takes in.
The packed food we got on the first day. If I remember correctly, there were bun, dates, air kotak, and biscuit. Then we filled our bottles with the free flow of air zam zam in the Masjidilharam.
When people came to the mosque for Maghrib, normally people would just stay from Maghrib up till the end of Tarawikh. You know, Makkah draws about 2-3 million Muslims from around the world during Ramadhan. So if you go out of the mosque to break fast after Maghrib prayer, chances are, you are going to end up praying outside the mosque, on the marble floor. So we decided that we are just going to stay till the end of Tarawikh. Which means, we were going to properly break our fast at 11 pm.
Guess what we survived on? Lots of dates, and lots of air zam zam.
And there were no cases of 'perut berkeroncong' and whatnot.
At first I doubted it when Mama said that we were going to be fine just with dates and air zam zam.
But I was wrong.
See the amount of dates that we 'collected' that day?
Yes, those dates were given by complete strangers.
I remember we were also given a kind of Arabic bread, and we ate it with cream cheese.
Those generous people, may Allah bless all of you.
And we thought it was only food.
But no, after Maghrib prayer, while we ate our dates and waited for Isya' prayer, a girl came to my mom and guess what?
She gave my mom 5 riyal.
We were stunned by the whole scene, like, why would she gave my mom money?
Then we came to a conclusion that, it's just the act of giving.
It's the Holy Ramadhan, and 'orang berlumba-lumba untuk buat kebaikan'.
Ya Allah, how I miss to be in Makkah again.
I just have so many things to tell people about the whole experience.
InsyaALLAH, sama-sama kita doakan semoga kita semua dapat ke sana suatu hari nanti.
I was really fortunate, it was my graduation gift I'll never forget.
Let's be thankful that Allah allows us to experience yet another Ramadhan.
Let's not sia-siakan peluang ini, shall we?
p/s: I was not a fan of dates before my trip to Makkah. Nak makan satu time berbuka pun bukan main susah. Alhamdulillah, when I was there, almost everyday makan dates, and I'm loving it now. Especially kurma nabi aka kurma ajwa.