Friday, June 23, 2017

Fasting and Flying

Growing up in the Philippines, being exposed to food, beverages and all other prohibited things was never my major problem in Ramadan. Philippines is a non-Muslim country, I became used to being the only one full of thirst in a group of non-fasting people. Nevertheless, never have I tried being exposed to such temptations for 90% of my fasting hours not until I entered aviation. Imagine yourself fasting with a galley position -  aka facing the oven, chillers, meal carts, meals and beverages throughout your working hours; Similar situation applies for aisle flight attendants as we all know, and what probably majority thinks, flight attendants are on board to serve passengers their needs ( which includes food and drinks)  which is by the way not our sole purpose as we are mainly on flight for safety purposes. Alhamdulillah, personally, such condition wasn't a serious problem for me. I guess it all comes down to your experience in fasting in a non-Muslim country.

The challenge that marked my brain was when I had this red-eye flight with passengers who are just like me, preparing themselves for another day in Ramadan; I had to serve them quickly with all my charms and smiles just so they would have enough time for sahoor plus I'd have a minute to drink my last cup of water for the time-being. Similary, two days ago, iftar was exactly the same time I had to bid my sweet farewells for our deplaning passengers. I can only wish I was at home, comfortably sitting with my family, waiting to break our fast together. Certainly, aforesaid experience is relatable for medical practitioners and others who work when the moon was out.

Something unique in aviation is most surely the challenge of time difference. The normal fasting hours in my base is 15; but because we travel from one place to the other, fasting hours can either extend or lessen. The most number of hours I fasted this month was 18 -  first was when I had to come back from India to base, and second was recently, when I flew to Paris. I had to admit it was a major challenge, as I was only used to fasting approximately 12 hours with the maximum of 15. The weather was somewhere between 30-35 degrees centigrade so you can just imagine how dry my throat was. But Alhamdulillah, with the will of Allah  (SWT), I did break my fast on Iftar time. Verily, with Allah nothing is impossible.

For some days, I hoped I was in the comfort of my family where fasting is easier and challenge-free. Then I reminded myself that even the smallest amount of hardship is promised with ease. Indeed, there is good in struggle, just as there is in comfort. May Allah (SWT) bless us all with beautiful patience.

~I wish everyone a peaceful and blessed Eid! 💙

1 comment:

  1. A blessed Eid, Rania! And I agree, it must have been hard to fast especially when you're working (especially in your line of work, too!). Glad you're able to get through. :)

    xx jhanzey.net

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