The moon indicates the end of Ramadan and it is over which means tons of celebrating. New clothes, sharing food with friends and family, visiting, and partying is going on. The official day of sikuku (special day) was this past Sunday and we had our first visitor before 8am! After that it was a stream of neighbors and friends stopping by to bring zawadis (gifts). Anni and went around with the beans and banana muffins the night before for the last breaking the fast meal. We were invited in to several homes to see the crazy preparations for sikuku. One house there were about 8 women sitting on the floor making various treats for the next day of celebration. They had cracked about 4 dozen eggs for cakes!! Our cake pan was in high demand and well as my electric beater:) The pan traveled from neighbor to neighbor and eventually made it back to our place. At one neighbor’s house the Mama asked why we had not gotten or henna yet and quickly escorted Anni and I into another room where about 15 women and little girls were all getting their henna for Eid. Even girls as small as two get henna all over their hands and feet and they even sit still waiting for it to dry for an hour!! They asked Anni if she wanted some and once she saw all the other little girls getting attention she quickly volunteered. Now Anni has never sat still for more than 3 minutes and as soon as they finished one of her hands she promptly wiped her face!! The collective gasp in the room was hilarious as she now had the dye on her face! It was hilarious!! But she learned and sat still for the next hand and adored all the “umependeza” (you have made your self beautiful) comments she quickly elicited from all the women.
The entire day friends and neighbors came by to offer food and greeings. This is seen as a time for a lot of baraka (blessing) and people share and are very generous during this special time of year. We were humbled by all the gifts we received and were grateful we got to participate in the exchange of gifts and learn more about the culture.
fresh juice, cutlesi (fish and potato cakes), and coconut bread
yummy coconut bread and a coconut to drink