On this lovely island, the dawn brought rain but not enough to do more than dampen the eid gaah sites (three – one males only, and two, both genders). We attended one with facilities for both genders, along with about 100 other people. The site scoped out was relocated within the same playing field, the khutbah spoke to those four actions/inactions to be avoided and the dialogue between Allah swt and the angels on the day of Eid about the attendees of the Eid gaahs.
For the first time ever, there was an invitation in the local newspapers announcing the date (subject to moon-sighting), time, and venue of:
“Open Air Congregational Prayers”
The khutbah and leadership of the salaah were delivered without a microphone or speakers, and there stood at the back of the males, one man who repeated the takbeers uttered by the Imam during the salaah in order to amplify the sound.
Post khutbah, there were the usual embraces (I admit it, since relocating to this island almost two decades ago, my eyes water very frequently at Eid time – oh, how I disdained that action by my elders so long ago) then a movement to light refreshments reflecting the diversity of the attendees – sawine, gulab jamoon, ice-cream, sandwiches, soft drinks etc.
Dressed in our finery, we visited our usual first stop where my youngest was treated to his favourite barfi (not at all like what its first syllable sounds like in English), then to our neighbours for a treat of biryani, then it being yawm-ul-jummah, a mad 35 minute rush to jummah salaah in the south-east of the island, dhal (tasted Trini but cooked by a Guyanese – who knew curry could have the same taste as saffron?), rice and beef washed down with ice cold watermelon, then cross-country to allow a Trini brother to rejoin his hiking group, then on to overlooking the west coast where we dined on biryani and roast turkey, an out of this world three bean salad (with corn – is corn a bean?). I got my favoured rasgullah (called something else depending on what part of India you come from and which I did not try to make this year), and took my chai to go (sacrilege to drink any kind of tea in anything but china), home to bathe and change, then off again to dinner by other friends (lasagne et al). We got home after 11pm after a full lovely day!