When I walk out of my home, I am immediately greeted by the color green. A small park, my personal reminder of life in this dry and otherwise lifeless colored environment.
The mountains that surround the city have dulled and now have massive scorch marks from random fires that have started on the hillsides. Only on clear days can I see them. Sometimes it gets so dusty they are hidden from my view.
When I open my gate, I am also greeted with silence. My, usually, busy city is subdued during the day, as it is currently Ramadan. It’s 108 degrees outside, yet Men and women are fasting from not only food, but water. Seeking Allah.
My neighbors avoid the outdoors, their schedules tend to flip, and the culture comes alive at night.
At 7:00 pm, the roads are nearly empty. Only a few cars are rushing home -literally racing the sunset. Once the sun is down, everyone can eat and drink again. Fast is broken. Iftar.
Once the meals are finished, my city springs to life. Traffic clogs all the major roads, parking is scarce, and the malls are full of families. It’s quite the experience watching everyone come and go.
As a unmarried lady in this region, my freedoms are limited -especially at night. I too feel as if I race against the sun… I can’t be out past dusk alone. Two years ago, before I made the trip back here, I wrestled with giving up that freedom. I love being out after dark. The coolness of the evening is refreshing and I’m just more of a night person anyways… These Ramadan June nights remind me of the limits I have in this culture -especially as I would love to be out there in the midst of all this life! But something I worried about giving up now has become my normal. This is just one of the many things I’ve been pondering…
Lately with my days being so quiet, there is so much time to think. Almost too much time. I consider how to best fill my upcoming days, accumulate more questions about my return home, and try to process the time I’ve spent here. It can be a bit overwhelming.
But it’s also been a reminder, over-and-over again, of His faithfulness to me. In bringing me back, seeing me through, and now leading me onward. It’s been such a time of abundance here.
I don’t really have too much to write at the moment… Honestly though, I think the heat here gives me writers block. I just wanted to share a little bit of what a summer day looks like here and share a couple of thoughts… To share He’s been faithful. One day I’ll write more details on what that’s looked like over the years, but for now I’ll just leave that snippet.