Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Eid Confusion

After writing that I don’t get a lot of phone calls, my VOIP started ringing. Four times, it was AdventureMan – we always have a lot to talk about. Once, my Mom, who calls just because she can and because the number we got is her area code, so it is like calling next door, and we all like that. Last, one of my friends in Kuwait – we have discovered we can call VOIP to VOIP. It’s like double the trouble – VOIP phones don’t always have the best connection, sometimes they are echo-y, sometimes one person can hear and the other can’t, sometimes you get other people on the conversation with you – so when you talk VOIP to VOIP, you have double the risk of technical difficulties, but still, an cost-per-phonecall that encourages long conversations (if you can hear and understand one another.)

“Has Eid started in Kuwait?” I asked at one point.

“I don’t thing so,” she replied. “I think it starts like Monday or so.”

It’s confusing to me. I know that Ramadan started four weeks ago tomorrow, so it is likely Eid will be 28 days later, like tonight or tomorrow or Sunday. But Kuwait started the Eid holidays on Friday, the official holidays, so that people will have nine full days of Eid celebration. (two weekends and a five day week). I don’t know if it is the same in Qatar.

It is also confusing as to just who gets the Eid holiday. When I lived in Tunis, lo, these many years ago, the entire country got every celebration. Those of us at the Embassy were doubly blessed; we got all the American holidays AND we got all the Tunisian holidays. So did just about everybody; the country shut down. For at least three days, no restaurants were open, no stores were open – you had to know about this in advance and bring in provisions to last until the Eid celebrations were over.

I wonder, did it used to be that way in Qatar? In Kuwait? That everything shut down, at least for the first day of Eid, and often longer?

In Kuwait and in Qatar, occasionally – like the first day of Eid – the stores will be closed a day – some just half a day. So many workers here are non-Muslim that it makes it possible to keep places open without intruding on someone’s celebration of Eid, in fact, I would think being able to go to restaurants and pick up a few items in the stores enhances the Eid experiences. I know most of my friends in Qatar are leaving town, just as I am getting back, beating feet for Europe, for Africa, for the Maldives, celebrating by traveling.

All the same, I am not sure when exactly Eid is expected to start officially, like according to the lunar calendar. Anyone?

September 18, 2009 - Posted by | Bureaucracy, Cross Cultural, Customer Service, Doha, Eating Out, Eid, Entertainment, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Financial Issues, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Local Lore, Qatar, Random Musings, Shopping


  1. Eid will either be on Sunday or Monday:)

    Comment by dandoon | September 18, 2009 | Reply

  2. I was expecting it to be Sunday but then my niece told me her husband said tomorrow- so we had a quick dash out to nthe shops to but=y new outfits, or at least put the finishing touches!
    Eid Mubarak for whenever!

    Comment by peopleandthingsthatannoyme | September 18, 2009 | Reply

  3. There is an old Kuwaiti tradition to know when the Eid is on for sure , We call it the DID THEY PUT THE Jacket ON .I will explain .

    Kuwait TV Plays an old Kuwaiti song for an old Kuwaiti gentleman who wears a Jacket( It used to be fashionable to wear a jacket over the deshdasha in the olden golden days of Kuwait ) and sings an Eid song which is known to almost all Kuwaitis and i suspect to many Arab expatiates who lived in Kuwait for some years .

    When Kuwait TV plays that song we all know without a shred of doubt that the EId is on . So when the jacket is on the Eid is definitely is on

    Here is the link to the Jacket ,

    Enjoy and Happy Eid to you and the family and friends

    Comment by daggero | September 18, 2009 | Reply

  4. Thank you, Dandoon. 🙂

    Holy Smokes, Teach! Were the stores crowded?

    LLOOLLL, Daggero, I remember the suit-coat jackets look over dishdasha from Jordan. I always kind of liked the look, it was dashing – or . . . hmmm. . . . dishdashing? OK, OK, I hear you groaning, I apologize.

    Eid Mubarak! Eid Mubarkom! (?)

    Comment by intlxpatr | September 19, 2009 | Reply

  5. True to its form the Kuwait TV just played the Song and it is Eid tomorrow Sunday 20th Sept, heeyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

    Happy Eid everybody

    Comment by daggero | September 19, 2009 | Reply

  6. No kidding?! I wish I had seen that! I was alerted by the rash of firecrackers going off, and the Qatteri Cat going bananas.

    Happy Eid, Daggero!

    Comment by intlxpatr | September 20, 2009 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: