The carpet in my bedroom, and the first thing I look at each morning. Not too shabby a view to wake up to, honestly.

Today is an important day in the Ramadan season. It is “Nata e Kadrit” [in Albanian], or “Laylat al-Qadr” in [transliterated] Arabic. I did not know about it until I was talking to another volunteer this afternoon and when I asked Mejreme if we were having guests or traveling this evening, she informed me that it was an important evening and we would stay home. According to Wikipedia,

… [it is] in Islamic belief the night when the first verses of the Quran were revealed to the Islamic prophet Muhammad. It is one of the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan and is better than 1000 months of worship. Muslims believe that on this night the blessings and mercy of Allah are abundant, sins are forgiven, supplications are accepted, and that the annual decree is revealed to the angels who also descend to earth.

One of my host father’s brothers is back from Switzerland with his family to visit. They stopped in just to say hello and we had an awkward couple minutes where they first talked about me like I was not also sitting at the table, asking my host mother how old I am and if I have a family, and then they attempted to speak to me in German repeatedly despite my telling them in Shqip that I don’t speak German.

I’m going to bed early tonight.


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