Saturday, August 29, 2009

Fasting fueds

When you are fasting during the hot summer months, it is easy to lose your temper. And at least three times a day, I bear witness to tempers flaring and a great release of pentup frustration and anger.

It's best to give everyone a wide berth and keep to yourself during the daytime if possible. But many hearty Moroccans are out there taking bread to the bakers, toting water in buckets and visiting the few shops that are open to purchase food and drink for the young, eldery and sick who cannot fast. Life carrys on as before for many and fasting is more of a challenge for those who must continue working during Ramadan.

I marvel at their fortitude and strength.

But things that would be overlooked with a full stomach and quenched thirst can give rise to awesome displays of temper right now. I witnessed a tremendous row at the water fountain yesterday. A big crowd gathered and as the combatants gained momentum, those standing sentinel nearby swooped in at the appropriate moment to stop the argument just when you thought blows were about to be exchanged. It was compelling to watch. They were allowed free reign to 'let it all out' until the moment when an invisible line was about to be crossed. Then the two people arguing were appropriately soothed by their 'minders'. And I can't help but think those losing their temper knew their brothers and sisters would protect them from themselves.

More heated exchanges ensued later that same afternoon. But this was more apparent as pure bravado and bluster.

Sometimes it feels good to raise your voice, wildly gestulate and storm off in a huff. I imagine those who lose them tempers like this can enjoy a nice siesta after expending so much energy.