Eid celebrations in Sahara, Glyfada, Athens

Gaby singing at the Sahara Lebanese restaurant in Glyfada, Athens. Credit: Nikos Kapsalis

Gaby singing at the Sahara Lebanese restaurant in Glyfada, Athens. Credit: Nikos Kapsalis

Yesterday was Eid, and Muslims everywhere were celebrating.  I was a little confused because of the moon, which was a little more than a half of its full size. I remembered people going onto their roof tops in Pakistan to get a glimpse of the New Moon, and couldn’t work out why it was Eid. I asked my friend Shaazia, who dispelled my confusion thus: “Eid ul fitr or al fitr is celebrated with the sight of new moon…..but Eid ul dhua, or Eid Adha is celebrated on the 10th of the Islamic month of zilhajj  when Muslims go on hajj to Mecca.” So now I know – or at least, remember.

Eid celebrations in the Sahara restaurant in Glyfada. photo credit Nikos Kapsalis

Eid celebrations in the Sahara restaurant in Glyfada. photo credit Nikos Kapsalis

Ramadan (the month and the period of fasting) was between the ‎6th of June and the 5th of July this year (2016). This is followed by Eid Al Fitr, when sweets are consumed after the fasting period. This Eid, al Adha is the one when sheep, goats and camels are sacrificed.

At least I know the traditional Eid greeting, and as the waiter we know came out of the Sahara to greet us, I said “Eid Mubarack!” He looked stunned, and took a second or two to say “Thanks!” He must have forgotten that when I first went to the restaurant I wore shalwar kameez. I tend not to in summer!

Sahara restaurant., Glyfada, Athens. Photo credit Nikos Kapsalis

Sahara restaurant., Glyfada, Athens. Photo credit Nikos Kapsalis

The food was good as always, and later there was a belly dancer whom we have seen before. This is far from usual for a Monday night! I think my friend and I were the only customers who weren’t Lebanese. This says a lot about the cuisine, I feel.

Gaby at the Sahara restaurant, Glyfada, Athens. Photo credit: Nikos Kapsalis

Gaby at the Sahara restaurant, Glyfada, Athens. Photo credit: Nikos Kapsalis

We started the meal with a large plate of pastirma (basturma on the menu) each, double portions, as we always do. I just adore the stuff! Next there was kibbeh and chicken wings, which usually come with garlic sauce (skordalia in Greek) Our main course was the kebab orientale, and we stopped there, without having a dessert. If you go there, the ekmek is very good. Normally we have wafer thin bread, but it was so busy, that never arrived – we don’t eat it anyway! The meal ended with a complimentary glass of Mastiha liquer – delicious!

If you are ever in Glyfada, you shouldn’t miss this restaurant and George, the waiter. It’s open every evening except Sundays, when it opens at lunchtime. You can smoke a water pipe filled with grape or apple shisha (there are other flavours too!) and lounge on cushions while you are smoking it.

One of my favourite restaurants.

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About lynnee8

I have travelled extensively both for business (I am a teacher and teacher-trainer of English as a Foreign Language) and pleasure. I have just come back from Pakistan where I lived for 4 years. I love Greece and have lived there for more than 10 years although not all at one time.
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