Celebrations happen outdoors and in huge gatherings. That is what we have been taught when the world was open and a hug was a gesture of love and care. The winged childhood and teenage… the time of feasts and family reunions… exchange of gifts and wishes… all the colours and more… the mehndi-designed palms. Those days, festivity without gatherings, with all its cacophony and music, was nothing but a void!
Changed are the times and the life, as we are compelled to usher in a ‘new normal’ where distancing is the order of the day! Not even a handshake; leave alone the warmth of the hug and being together. Even in the house, ‘social distancing’ is the norm of the day in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
But we have to hold on to the restrictions for the larger cause of the people around you, because, we have to ensure the health of the society for a better celebration tomorrow. As Mahatma Gandhi has said, “To lose patience is to lose the battle.” Who knows either of us is not a carrier of the virus that changed the way of the world? However, today’s celebrations cannot be postponed for tomorrow, we all know. That means a balance, a new realization as to how we should adhere to the rules and at the same time celebrate Eid Al Adha in all its fervour.
We all know Oman is passing through a challenging time following the pandemic and it has extended the total all-day lockdown till July 24. This means a curb on business activities apart from movements of individuals and vehicles. But the authorities have ensured the supply of the essential commodities. The Supreme Committee has also said that Eid Al-Adha prayers or the traditional pre-Eid souqs would not be permitted and there is a big no to gatherings in the Sultanate, including the family reunions or even the greeting assemblies.
In many places in different parts of the world, unrestricted people’s movement and overcrowded shopping and marketplaces had led to the spread of the pandemic in the previous spells of the pandemic. Hence we have to be doubly cautious.
But who said you are alone on this joyous occasion? Every single individual is like you and we are all together even in the absence of the gathering or the reunion. So, even in lockdown, you are free to have a feast with your family members. Every single family in their own houses but with the realization that we are all together naturally brings about a cozy feeling. Why not have a Zoom meeting over lunch and share the warmth? Why don’t you show the world outside your windows to the dear ones on the other side of the continent?
In this world of connectivity, everything is possible and the distant ones are just a finger-touch away. So, why should you feel lonesome at all when we are all there next to you? Yes, we together make the mighty ocean of camaraderie and sense of belonging. A good photograph of yours with the Eid Al-Adha will definitely be a reason for celebration for your dear ones who miss you a lot. Let them wake up to your voice and pleasant image on the auspicious occasion.
And then, you know there would be someone expecting your feeling of empathy when they pass through a tough time. Just make sure you and your family are able to shed some light, some hope in their life, and treat them as equal. Then just have a look at your garden or the flowerpot. There you will see all the blooms smile at you, saying that no one is alone in this world.
About the author: Reena Abdulrahman is the Chief Operating Officer of Alhind Travel and Tours for GCC and Africa. Reena has over 21 years of experience working with top airlines in the region.