Ramadan Kareem

Another Ramadan month has come around.
I was pretty nervous the first time I was in Dubai during Ramadan. After reading lots of articles in the papers telling me that eating and drinking in public was forbidden, I had the impression that the general atmosphere would be quite draconian.
Fortunately, it’s nothing of the sort.
Whilst you aren’t allowed to eat or drink in public, there aren’t any patrols walking around searching for naughty people having a snack. If someone does forget it’s Ramadan and smokes, eats or drinks outside, the chances are they will be gently reminded they shouldn’t rather than be locked up in prison.
The general atmosphere in Dubai, for me at least, is fairly relaxed. There’s far less traffic for example – although driving around iftar time, when people break their fast, can be extremely dangerous. I find it hard to understand why someone religious enough to fast all day can put their and other people’s lives in danger by racing home at dusk to eat.
Work definitely slows down. Sun’s office hours are 9 till 3, for example. During my first year here, working for my last company, it was only Muslims who got reduced hours. Following a government edict, Ramadan working hours now have to apply to all staff.
The reduced working times don’t affect me hugely, as most of the region I cover is working as normal. Mrs Saul gets a nicely shortened working week though. Strangely she’s not allowed to be at school before a certain time and has to leave by a certain time as well. I don’t quite understand why someone can’t voluntarily work in their own office.
Apart from a week in the US, it looks like I’ll be in the general area for most of the month, so I’ll get to enjoy the fun side of Ramadan – iftar and suhour buffets, for example – without having to go through the fasting part!

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One Response to “Ramadan Kareem”

  1. Dubai Says:

    Work definatley slows down, but still gets done.

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