Fujairah: A day after the tragic deaths of seven siblings in a house fire in Rul Dadna, the little village on the east coast was still coming to terms with the trauma.
As the sun dawned on Tuesday on this quiet village, the air was still and the winter morning seemed colder than usual.
Though, the shops and schools opened as usual, residents struggled to go about their routine, with the images of the departed flooding back in their minds repeatedly.
A mourning tent has been set up near the central mosque of the village and the family has been receiving a steady stream of visitors since early morning on Tuesday.
Among the dignitaries who visited the tent to offer their condolences to the family were Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Lt-General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Interior.
Speaking to Gulf News, the departed children’s grandfather Mohammad Saeed, said he has no words to express his grief.
“We will remain patient and bear this loss. I don’t have words to express our grief, but this is the will of Allah Almighty and we all have to return to him. We pray for the children,” said Saeed.
The children’s father, who worked in the UAE Armed Forces, had passed away in 2012, with only the mother left to grieve.
With the village inhabited by only a few hundred natives and some expats, most people here are either related or are familiar with each other personally.
“This is a big loss for all of us, we are a very close-knit community and we feel the pain for each other,” said Salem Ali, a young resident of Rul Dadna.
As the day passed, an eerie silence hung over the settlement, capturing the sombre mood of the villagers, which was only disturbed by the occasional movement of vehicles entering the village, as dignitaries and residents from across the country arrived to offer their condolences to Al Suraidi family.
The family buried seven of their loved ones aged between five and 13, including five-year-old twins Sara and Sumaiya on Monday.
As the sun began its descent, the air around the family home, where the tragedy took place, was still heavy.
The charred remains of the house and the blackness of the burnt walls reflected the scars the incident has left on the grieving family and the village folks.
The place seemed a far cry from the one where the laughter and chatter of the seven children reverberated until two days ago.
“Now, the streets are empty and no children have been playing outside since yesterday. Usually you will hear noise of children playing or brawling outside, it would seem a nuisance to me before, now I am missing it,” said Hamdan, a neighbour.