Monday, June 30, 2014

Ramadan Greetings

Are you celebrating Ramadan?  Are your co-workers, friends or loved ones fasting? Be sure to greet everyone properly during this holy season with some polite expressions.

Ramadan Kareem! -  Noble or Generous Ramadan!

Ramadan Mubarak! - Blessed Ramadan!"

Kul 'am wa enta bi-khair! - May every year find you in good health!

And if you'e ready to impress try:

Atyab at-tihani bi-munasabat hulul shahru Ramadan al-Mubarak
- The most precious congratulations on the occasion of the coming of Ramadan



There are a lot of things I know.  I know that every day I learn something new, which means I don't know very much.  One topic on which I am not well educated is Ramadan.  I didn't know anyone who celebrated Ramadan growing up.  In fact my knowledge on this topic is limited to a few points. I know that it is a Muslim holiday.  I know that part of the celebration is fasting. And...? ok that was all I knew. 

Here are some basics:
Ramadan is an Islamic holy month when Muslims may not eat or drink from morning until night. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic year. Because the Islamic calendar is lunar, Ramadan falls at different times of the year. Muslims celebrate Ramadan as the month during which the prophet Muhammad received the first of the revelations that make up the Qur'ān, the holy book of Islam.

Fasting during Ramadan is the fourth of the five Pillars of Faith, the chief religious duties of a Muslim. All Muslims must fast if they have reached puberty and are of sound mind. Exceptions are made for some groups, such as the sick, the elderly, pregnant women, and travelers. Those who are able, however, must make up the missed fast days at a later time. A Muslim who deliberately breaks the fast must atone by fasting for two continuous months or feeding the poor.

Fasting begins at dawn and lasts until sunset. During this time, Muslims cannot take food or drink, inhale tobacco smoke, or engage in sexual activity. The daily fast is broken by a light meal called the iftar, followed by the evening prayer. The preferred food for the iftar is dates and water. 

Ramadan is also a time for other religious activities. The nights are often devoted to special prayers and to recitations from the Qur'ān. During the last 10 days, some Muslims seclude themselves in a mosque to give full time to religious contemplation. The end of Ramadan is celebrated by a great festival called Īd al-Fitr. (Ramadan) 
There is oodles more to learn about Ramadan but since there is a whole month dedicated to Ramadan I think we can save some for tomorrow.  


"Ramadan." World Book Online Reference Center. World Book, 2014. Web. 30 June 2014.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Updates - Inch By Inch

Today I received my fully authenticated masters degree and my masters transcripts from FedEx.  I am constantly impressed at the service they can provide.  I think it is sad when a business gives you a promise, then meets or exceeds that promise, and my response is to be surprised.  I was told my parcel would arrive at or before 10:30am and promptly at 10:25am my envelop was delivered. 

I do still need my FBI clearance and while I was counseled to wait until this Friday to call back to check its status.  I think I might be a sneak and call today or tomorrow.  
Inch by inch, row by row,
I'm going to make this garden grow

In other good news, I am much too busy to be bored.  My dog tried to catch a skunk which has necessitated lots of cleaning around the house and of course bathing of the dog.  

Thank you to everyone who has been following my strange journey thus far.  My blog has been visited by over two thousand times.  I am reminded of the Arabic proverb - a hand by itself cannot clap.  We are all better together, thank you all for being with me.

tahiyyaat - regards

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Updates - We Are Waiting for Vicini


Not sure what to make of all the new and unusual contacts in my phone.  Today I called the FBI and darned if they aren't just the nicest people.  I thought I would check on the status of my FBI Clearance.  Turns out they haven't opened any mail received after May 19th.  All mail goes through this intense security screening for contaminants among other steps. I mailed my paperwork out on the 28th of May.  This means they haven't processed my documents.  They haven't opened my documents and thus I am not in the system yet.  I was encouraged to call back next Friday.  

I am starting to think selling my plasma sounds like a better and better idea. 

An Arabic proverb says "The chameleon does not leave his tree until he sure of another." A very wise expression that suggests I am not a very smart chameleon for clearly I am treeless.