A sharply chilled morning dawn, coupled with dusty particles eager to attach themselves to every sister's draping abaya (outer garment)... to many this might be the prelude for a not so attractive experience... however, for me, it was one to remember. The build-up to the blessed three day 'Eid ul-Fitr celebrations were beautifully received, having been invited to a couple of iftaars, a reminder of the beauty of fasting in the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah (last month in the Islamic calendar). I couldn't help but feel he beauty of the approaching festival, though loving thoughts of my family across the ocean, lingered deeply in my mind. But, alhamdulillah, the fact that I knew I could just pick up the phone and hear their comforting voices subdued my overwhelming thoughts. The sisters' iftaars I had the pleasure of attending was succeeded by a beautiful Istiraaha (gathered 'Eid celebration) on the Second day of 'Eid. A stunning garden boarded off by raised walls surrounding the area was the scene of the Istiraaha, scented with mouth-watering traditional Arab style dishes and an Asian style cuisine. Masha'Allah, the array of sisters from across the globe was a wonderful sight to see. Sisters from all backgrounds, in all shapes, forms and sizes decorated the open ground with their chosen 'Eid garments. Although I'm use to 'Eid dinners, gatherings and parties, this one had a slightly different feel to it... the sisters and children appeared so carefree, as though they didn't have a care in the world, masha'Allah - like many enjoying a unique lifestyle in the blessed city. And as much as the pre-'Eid iftaars and Istiraaha were beautiful to experience, one event, by far, was the highlight of my Saudi 'Eid experience... Immediately following the Fajr salaah (dawn prayer) my sister and I proceeded to get ready for the 'Eid salaah. Now back in London, though my family and I would make it a habit to prepare ourselves straight after the dawn salaah - this was always with the aim of catching the first salaah, normally at 8:00am. So the thought that we'd be partaking in an 'Eid salaah as early as 6:30am... was a different experience to look forward to. As we travelled to the prayer ground, my heart begun to race with excitement: I was about to experience the 'Eid prayer according to the sunnah (the way of the beloved Prophet - salallahu 'alayhi wa sallam), insha'Allah. Approaching the open musallah I observed a multitude of women, men and children making their way to the designated place of prayer. Unprepared for the temperature or the outdoor experience, my sister and I hastened to huddle up with a sister on her ground mat. The sharply chilled morning dawn air, coupled with dusty particles eager to speckle the garments of the worshippers, ironically soothed my soul. Here I was perched upon the ground mat of a 'stranger' - my sister-in-Islam - in a crispy chilled open-roof musallah, about to stand shoulder-to-shoulder and feet-to-feet with the purpose of uniting in the way of our Lord - our Beloved (Subhaanahu wa ta'ala). Fulfilling a recommended sunnah of the prophet (salallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) as a means of worshipping Allah - The Most High. The sound of the Imam's voice - a reminder to straighten our lines and stand as close together as possible - indicated the salaah was about to begin. I glanced around, in hope of capturing 'a perfect' moment before losing it. My eyes took a quick glimpse of the ever-joyful children; the pleasantly plain and authentic walls of the musalla, the picturesque clear-blue sky and the beautifully covered all-in-black female worshippers perched... upon a sand-pebbled ground... Alhamdulillah - my moment had been captured.