Mr Boota is a seventh generation drummer who just can’t help himself. I salute his dedication mash’Allah – I can barely wake myself up before dawn, never mind half my neighbourhood. I heard the traditional Ramadan drummers on a trip to Pakistan a few years ago. In the neighbourhood where I was staying the drummer was a Christian man and the tradition was to shower him with money and gifts on Eid as a thank you for his services the preceding month. I hope Mr Boota receives an appreciative gift or two this Eid – just to balance out all that abuse.
Giving Ramadan a Drumroll in Brooklyn at 4 A.M.
A few hours before dawn, when most New Yorkers are fast asleep, a middle-aged man rolls out of bed in Brooklyn, dons a billowy red outfit and matching turban, climbs into his Lincoln Town Car, drives 15 minutes, pulls out a big drum and — there on the sidewalk of a residential neighborhood — starts to play.