Travel holidays. There is no bigger holiday in the Muslim world than Ramadan. The variations in Islam between countries that are all lumped together as ‘Muslim’ can be huge. In fact, there are things that tie all Muslims together (very broad things), but by no means is a Turkish ‘Muslim’ anything like a Moroccan ‘Muslim’.
And I use the quote marks because I’m not talking about the really devout. I’m talking about the average person you meet who is Muslim because they were born Muslim but really doesn’t take the time to think about it – or care about it.
One example of this is the holiday that I’m currently enjoying. Just like in Morocco, Turkey closes schools and government offices for the week so that students and workers can go home to be with family during the ‘feast of the sacrifice’. To see my post about Eid last year where the river ran red with the blood of sacrificial sheep you can go to the links below.
This year, I didn’t see much in the way of celebration. The University students all left Manisa to go back to the family homes. I saw a couple of sheep here and there, but there was certainly no blood in the streets. Instead, what you see in Turkey is young kids going from door to door asking for sweets or money.
No fires in the yard, no bleating of sheep, no bloody rivers.
Admittedly, this isn’t Eastern Turkey, but still. We were surprised to see the complete and utter nothingness which we witnessed. I’m sure there were plenty of sheep sacrificed here, but the cost of 800 Lira vs. 800 dirhams in Morocco is pretty sharp since the first translates to about 400 Euros and the second to about 80 Euros. That certainly makes a difference.