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Posts Tagged ‘holidays’

The beauty of Ramadan

September 3, 2010 4 comments

This is my first post in absolutely ages. I’m sure nobody has missed my largely pointless ramblings but I felt the urge to write about this beautiful month we find sailing past us.

Ramadan is beautiful. Now, I could end this post there and I wouldn’t feel like I’ve missed anything. However, for the sake of making up for lost time, I’ll continue. While I fast (during daylight hours) I naturally feel at peace. I remember a friend once told me a couple of Ramadans ago that I’m different when I fast. He said that I seem at ease and more content.

The wisdom behind having this period of holding back your desires is substantial. Hunger and thirst are not in themselves the purpose. Rather, the purpose is what follows the hunger and thirst i.e. weakening the desires, extinguishing anger, subduing the soul to a reassured state. If this purpose is not achieved, then fasting is useless as it has no effect besides making you hungry and thirsty.

These days you have close to 1.6 billion people not eating and drinking in the daytime. That’s powerful and it gives Muslims worldwide a sense of family and kinship that underlines the feeling of all Muslims being one family. And when you see people smiling at you whenever you meet them because they feel at peace when fasting, you really don’t want Ramadan to end.

All the ways that I find to waste time the rest of the year simply don’t appeal to me during this month. I feel at peace and I have time to reflect. It’s a blessing that Ramadan was totally during the summer holidays this year. But it’s leaving us so soon. This month when all our Muslim friends become so generous and kind and spend their quiet times praying for forgiveness. A prophetic saying instructs: if somebody shouts at you or insults you, rather than replying, you say “I’m fasting” and you show tolerance and patience.

… I wish every month could be Ramadan.

A December in Japan // WP slideshow test

April 2, 2010 2 comments

Just a select few of the shots I took during my stay in Japan at the end of last year.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

So the new slideshow feature works too…

Flying out tomorrow!

December 6, 2009 Leave a comment

So people, the day is almost upon us. Inshallah, my flight to Tokyo is on Monday and I’ll be in Japan until xmas eve. Many people to see and many places to visit, not forgetting my beloved Matsudo. It will be extremely natsukashii to see the place I called home during my first visit back in 2004. I’ve been looking at the weather reports for Tokyo over the last few days, as you do in the build-up to a trip abroad, and it’s going to be a little warmer than here so I guess that’s another good thing to look forward to.

Anyway, I will try and post updates if I find the time to but I do promise to take plenty of piccies. Aah and of course I will be tweeting. Some of the highlights this time around will be a Japanese mosque-crawl and meeting up with some of the vloggers I subscribe to on youtube. Wish me luck and happy non-denominational generic winter season’s greetings to all (Eid and Chrismukkah included)!

Booked to go to Jyapaan

October 11, 2009 2 comments

So, tickets are purchased, language skills need a bit of brushing up but I’m soooo looking forward to it. It’s my first voyage back to the land of Gatsby body paper since my working holiday in 2004. As soon as the xmas holidays begin, I’m off for just over 2 weeks.

I love the feeling of going to Japan. The only thing I don’t like, if I remember correctly, is… the actual going bit. The 12 hour trek across the world is a bit on the unbearable side of things as it just screws with your mind. However-many long-haul flights I have taken, it doesn’t really get any more pleasurable. I do generally like flying, I just wish it was faster.

This time, I thought I’d give Virgin Atlantic a try. Well, actually the decision was made for me really as I used my Virgin Flying Club mileage to get a bit of a discount and compared to other direct Heathrow-Narita flights, it was a good £100 cheaper. I flew JAL last time so I’m not expecting Virgin to be better as Asian carriers generally have a better service but past experiences with a good old British airline (BA and their limited legroom) means that if I have space, I’ll be happy. Plus now that I’m a little older, I’ve come to expect to be treated a little better for the money you have to fork out to sit in a metal tube for half a day.

A big plus this time around is that because I will be entering Japan with a simple 90-day tourist stamp on my passport, I can actually use the Japan Rail Pass!! Score! It means that I can use the Shinkansen unlimited for 7 days so I can go and see friends all over the place. My current plans include using it to head West to Nagoya, Kansai and Fukuoka to see as many of my JapSoc friends as possible. One of the main reasons I chose to go in December is because some of my Leeds buddies are out in Japan for their year abroad so meeting up with our Japanese friends will be just like old times.

Anyway, that’s all for now. I’m currently spending this fine autumnal Sunday afternoon in bed with a case of the dreaded Freshers flu. I leave you with the bombshell: “aiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii can give you GATSBY”

I just wish that we could have a Matsudo Legends reunion. See you in the Toke!

Ideas Worth Spreading

December 28, 2008 Leave a comment

just watched the latest TED talk which was by Jennifer 8 (yes 8 is her middle name) Lee and was basically about how a lot of “chinese” food isnt actually chinese and how if you were to take fortune cookies to china and show them to the locals, the majority wouldn’t know what they were. the same goes for “chinese” crispy beef that we have here in the UK and chop suey (which means something like odds and ends in mandarin) to name a few. oh yeah, i still need to try some american chop suey. a mate of mine who went to an american school, while growing up in saudi always goes on about it.

all this food talk is making me hungry so off i go downstairs to eat something.

PS. being home for the holidays is the best

‘ayup

December 24, 2008 Leave a comment

well then i have finally decided to start a blog. seen as ive read quite a few in my time and been entertained by a good number of them, i thought itd be a good idea. i hope its not just a phase.
its christmas eve and theres no snow for miles here in yorkshire. my beloved british weather… cant live with you, cant live without you.

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