In Malaysia you know the holy month of Ramadhan is near when the moment you switch on to Era, the first thing you'd hear is ,
Well here, you'd notice supermarkets everywhere would start to prominently display biscuits. And not to forget cordials and dates (macam kat Malaysia jugak le).
Last night I was at Carrefour Permata Hijau (just accross my apartment) and right at the entrance there were cans after cans of biscuits stacked to almost 5 feet high.
Why biscuits you might ask.
Because it's cheap and apparently a must buy for the not so economically well off. To be consumed during iftar.
This Ramadhan will be my third in Jakarta. I still remember my first iftar in Jakarta in 2006. It was my first ever iftar alone. There I was at the dining table with all sorts of food before me. My thoughts were with my family back home. And my eyes welled up. Hey... it's really sedih you know. Never before in my fasting life I had to buka puasa alone on the first day of Ramadhan.
The second year was not as sad.
Ramadhan in Jakarta is not that different from home. However, it has it's peculiarities or shall i say uniqueness.
Here, during the month of Ramadhan, eating places would place a curtain on their windows to cover the view from people outside. The reason - so as not to offend passing muslims who are fasting.
My take on that? It's is sooooo insulting to me as a muslim.
One can put a plate of rice with ayam percik and sambal sotong before me at midday during Ramadhan and I would never be tempted to touch the food. Telan air liur tu most probably le.
Come to think about it, in Malaysia restaurant owners cover up their windows so as to hide from public view muslims who are eating in their premises. Terbalik purpose pulak.
So it's that time of the year again. Ramadhan. I'm going back early this year so that I'd have a few days to explore pasar ramadhan in KL.
Pandan Indah, Taman Nirwana, Desa Pandan and the mother of all pasar Ramadhan - at the back lanes off Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman.
Rindu le kat popia Desa Pandan.