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November 7, 2011

Feature: Hajj Diary Series, Part 20

by Simple Muslimah

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Muzdalifah is wide awake at 12.30 a.m!

Everyone up and about. Our coach did not have a proper sticker on it so we went back to Arafat to pick one up.

We finally arrive in Muzdalifah and lay out our sleeping gear. We brought a huge drum with us and fill it full of water to use to make wudu with in the morning.
Mum is out like a light and I watch her sleep. This is all she has ever asked for. All those years crying thinking she wouldn’t get to be here and now she is fast asleep in Muzdalifah.
Zinger and the gang out for the count also but I cant sleep.

Somehow I nod off and I am awoken by Zinger punching me(really unnecessary!) telling me it’s time for Fajr. We do wudu and pray. People start to look for their stones but I had had got mine in Arafat which caused a bit of contention but it doesn’t matter.

In no time whatsoever the queues for the coaches are huge.
Mava thinks we should walk but mum not happy with that idea so he sets off and will meet us in Mina. Proper soldier. Our new nickname for him is ‘Mava Dundee’ as he can track us down anywhere.

You have to see the scenes of chaos and carnage that follow to understand. This was my biggest fear on the actual days of Hajj. Nothing else worried me except the morning of Muzdalifah. The queue jumping is shameful. By the time we get out of the compound it is mayhem. People were not going to play fair and were more than willing to harm others to get ahead.
Zinger and the gang decide to wait for the coach but I decide we have no choice but to walk it. Staying here would pose all sorts of fitnah that I don’t want to be subjected to.

I have no idea how but mum has got an old woman holding her hand. She lost the people she was with and she decides to come with us. We have to walk extra slow to accommodate. I am worried as the people we are following are getting further and further away but I keep finding people I know from our group. Somebody points out that a group in front of us with a huge green flag are in the camp next to us. Turns out they are Sufis and the funny part is I know them as they from my home town! I happily become Sufi for the next hour as we walk to our camp.
We are definitely among the first to make it back. Huge relief.

I really have to discuss the concept of travelling light with mum as my hands are aching.

I phone Zinger who tells me that they not even close to getting on a coach and are going to wait to the end. He tells me that there are huge standoffs between groups trying to get on coaches.

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