On Wednesday, Muslims all over the world marked the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, which requires them to abstain from eating or drinking anything from sunrise to sunset. The fasting takes discipline, especially if your job is to work the Halal truck and sit all day in an aluminum box, slapping pounds of meat onto hissing grills and serving it to the “starving” people on their lunch breaks on some of the longest, hottest days of the year.

I talked to some of the fasting Muslims working the Halal trucks in Midtown and translated their quotes from Arabic. They kindly offered me cold drinks, but I’m also fasting. Ramadan Kareem! Check back every Friday for a new photo essay.

See the photos and quotes in the gallery above.

(Photos: Aymann Ismail/ANIMALNewYork)