…Cowtown, or, Eid al-Adha

We live in one of the nicer neighborhoods in Dhaka, and our neighbors tend to ‘do it right’ when it comes to holidays and celebrations. And, doing it right in relation to the Eid of Sacrifice means buying the biggest most pristine bull available and sacrificing it in the street to the accompaniment of a small band in front of all your relatives smiling faces.

Yesterday I took a tour of a small part of our neighborhood and here are a few of the cows that will be dead by tonight. There also a few goats, and if you were in another area, you might get a sheep or camel.

Eid al-Adha comes at the end of the month of pilgrimage and is both a commemoration of Abraham’s sacrifice and a day of almsgiving, with 1/3 of the animal being given to the poor, 1/3 to the immediate family and 1/3 to relatives, neighbors and friends.

We’re not sharing in any of the feastings this weekend, however, nor did we buy our own goat. However, a neighbor a couple of streets away who also lives in an apartment bought a goat for themselves. Rather than let it eat the plants along the side of the road during the day, they put it up on their 3rd floor balcony, where it bleated piteously between eating their houseplants as I walked by.

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