Religion Magazine

Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah

By Kaye

 

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Visiting Makkah

Holy Ka'ba in Makkah

Besides earning, working in Saudi Arabia is a blessing for most Muslim expatriates. Why? Because you are closer to performing one of the five pillars of Islam and that is Hajj.
As an expat worker, we may be engrossed with our duties and responsibilities to our job and we may not have all the free hours to visit Makkah but compared to the other Muslims back home, we have greater chance to travel to Makkah to perform Umrah and Hajj with minimal expenses incurred upon us Alhamdulillah. Nowadays, with every price going rocket-high, it takes fortune to perform Hajj or even umrah for that matter.  Many of our brothers and sisters spend their lifetime saving pennies in preparation for the ultimate goal to step to the holy land of Makkah and perform tawaf around Ka’ba. As an expat here in Saudi Arabia, imagine how blessed you are to be able to do all these religious activities, Alhamdulillah.

Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah
Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah

These are magnificent views on our way to Makkah. I may have not visited Texas, USA but these mountains closely resemble that of Grand Canyon. This Ramadhan, we were blessed enough to be able to perform umrah along with other friends and colleagues. This is one of my memorable umrah. I may have performed many umrah before and all of those were on regular days but this is my second umrah performed on Ramadhan. There were hundreds of thousand pilgrims in Makkah, from all walks of life, colors and races, each one making the most out of this rare chance.

 

Performing Umrah

We arrived Makkah at Fajr prayer and after securing our luggage at the hotel, which by the way is located on a hilltop as it is so difficult to get hotel booking on a nearby area on Ramadhan season, we immediately headed to Masjid Al Haram to perform tawaf. It was too crowded and from afar, as we approached our way to Masjid Al Haram and without my glasses on I viewed all the out coming pilgrims as tiny little ants with only their heads visible.

Holy Ka'ba

What adds up to the crowd are the make-shift structures used in building extensions to the Masjid Al Haram to provide ease to the pilgrims.

Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah
Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah

Performing saee isn’t that hard as compared to doing tawaf. There isn’t much crowd and we have finished the rounds with ease. However we were rerouted to third floor as the ground floor was closed for construction.

 

As we were heading to Masjid Al Haram at Fajr, there were many merchandise on the sidewalk pavements. Colorful head scarves, thobes, prayer rugs and dress were displayed at very cheap price. There was no chance to buy any as we were speeding our way to catch Fajr prayer. We were hoping to buy stuffs after tawaf and to our disappointment, the price went up as soon as they were already hung on the stall. It was only after Taraweeh prayer when we got the chance to scour the night market for shopping. It was a very inconvenient shopping due to over crowd pilgrims and as a result, I haven’t bought the stuffs I originally planned to procure save for two women’s prayer dress at SR 20 each and a silver-colored teapot that cost SR 10.

Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah
Makkah Tower Clock
Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah
Pigeons outside Masjid Al-Haram

 

Sense of Fulfillment

It was a three-struggling-days but all worth it. We felt recharged with an aching body and sleepy head. We left Makkah just before Asr prayer. It’s time to say goodbye but hopefully this will not be the last. On our way home, we passed through views of mountain rocks and high-rising buildings mushrooming the city.

Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah
Umrah and Ramadhan – A Visit To Makkah

There was a sense of fulfillment at the end of these hard days. Alhamdulillah.


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