Let me make it clear at the outset….I am a MAN and yes, I am writing about women. That in itself sounds like a death wish, but I am going to take my chances.
Ramadan – A Woman’s Month!
Contrary to popular belief, Ramadan is a woman’s month not a man’s. People commonly think that during Ramadan, men do nothing at the office all day; all work comes to a halt and we are just sleeping on our chairs. Meanwhile women toil all day cleaning, cooking, washing and… cooking again!
That is so not true! Let’s take a closer look…
A typical Pakistani hosewife’s day begins around 12:00 noon when the “maasi” rings the doorbell. The begum sahiba wakes up to open the door and then curls back into bed for some more beauty sleep. The “maasi” does all the cleaning and dusting, with the “aray kambakhat sahi tara kar!” and “jaldi jaldi haath chala” motivational urging from the begum.
After this terribly tedious job of supervising the help with a tasbeeh or Quran in hand, the begum sahiba plops onto her favorite couch for her drama or religious program break. Again, with a tasbeeh or Quran in hand.
This takes us to somewhere around ‘asr time when the poor husband walks in with bags full of samosay and pakoray. And ladies, after a full day’s work at the office followed by fighting frustrated, angry, fasting drivers in traffic, fighting to get “adha keelo” samosay and pakoray is no small task!
Anyway back to our Begum Sahiba (BS):
BS: Khairiyat, aaj dair hogayee?
Husband: Haan bohut traffic tha aaj!
BS: Acha sunay aaj chanay abhi tuk galay nahi hain, bahar se thoray dahi baray or cholay le kar aajain
Husband: Yaar tum bhi na! Pehlay phone nahi kar sakti theen!
BS: Fursat ho tau karoon phone, subha se lagi hui hoon safai mai ooper se yeh maasiyan dimagh khati hain!
Husband: Acha bhai le aata hoon!
BS: ….oh aur yaad hai na aaj raat ko meri jootiyan final karni hain?!
The amazing dastarkhwan prepared with so much devotion and energy is not complete till the last minute before maghrib and the BS has just enough time to get 4.78 “Allah Hu Akbar’s” in.
BS: Uff..itna kaam hota hai k dua k liyay time hi nahi bach ta. Aap log bhi thora kuch karliya karain.
Maghrib till Isha is a relatively a more relaxed time where the whole family is glued to the TV where you have a beard a channel to choose from. Tasbeeh and Quran in hand ofcourse!
Right after Isha it’s either taraweeh time or shopping time. Before the mid of Ramadan, its generally taraweeh time and – right after that – begins shopping time! Out of the average 15 days of shopping, approximately 1.5 hours are spent on shopping for the men of the house. The rest is dedicated to KDA, Tariq road, Ashiyana, Hyderi for Peeko, matching, dupatta, chooriyan, bail, silayee, karahee, darzi and what not! Or, if you prefer Dolmen Mall, Tariq Road, Millennium Mall, Saima Mall, Dolmen Mall Clifton, Park Towers, or The Forum for designer kurti’s, shalwar kameez, shoes, slippers, sandals, etc.
This shopping craze goes on till 2-3 am in the morning every day for the last 15 days of Ramadan and markets are still full of ladies buying things on the last day. During all this, the men are driving around like taxi drivers looking for a parking space to park in, holding the babies and standing outside Metro or Rabi center, carrying the bags and emptying our bank accounts.
Finally we get to sehri time.
I will give you women this. You do make parathas for us at Sehri. That must be difficult after the day long ordeal that you went through.