“Humare Zamane Mein…” Why Eid Doesn’t Feel Festive Anymore


“Humare Zamane Mein…” Why Eid Doesn’t Feel Festive Anymore

Illustration: Ahmed Sikander


here are a few terrifying moments in life when we feel a palpable sense of dread and wish the ground beneath our feet would swallow us. Like writing a math paper you’re not prepared for. Or sending the screenshot of a personal conversation to the wrong person. But nothing can match the dread that engulfs you when your domestic helper announces that she wants the day off to spend Eid with her family. Your lips are saying, “Yes, of course, everyone should spend Eid with their family” but in your mind, you’re experiencing one those blood-curdling Ekta Kapoor moments that go “Nahin, nahin, nahin!”

Much as I’d happily give an arm and a leg in exchange for her to stay, I watched her leave, her cheeks glowing with the joy of not having to see her employer’s face for the next few days – pretty much my state when I leave office early on Friday evenings. With the luxury of having someone else take over the reins of the kitchen, my role on Eid has always been limited to entertaining guests. Tiresome as that sounds, this time around, I had the added responsibility of shouldering the preparations that went on behind the curtain.