Tag: iPhone photography

In Transit.

I don’t know when I stopped counting down the days in a year. It used to be a habit I started with the intent of making me more conscious and aware of time.

At that time, I felt like I was really chasing after something. Keeping track of my goals every day amidst anxiety, hope and extremely bourgeoisie dreams. It hit me the other day that I got drowned in working hard that I forgot that I initially had an end goal.

When you end up working so hard you lose track and forget your goals… Just working. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, you’ll get a moment of lucidity that prompts you to realize you got a little distracted on your goals. It’s great, because it will force you to sort of restart your system and get back on track.

Remember, the work is a stepping stone but it is not the end goal.

So you take a step back, take a deep breath and empty your mind. The world sort of goes quiet in those moments. And you get to watch your life from a few steps back and think, hey. I’m proud of you kiddo.

That lucid feeling descended on me on Thursday. I looked up to the sky and saw the thin crescent moon at around 4.30 pm marking The Islamic New Year, 1439. A new moon. A new year. It just seemed very special and magical in that moment.

I can’t describe what happened next but I felt the hairs raise on the back of my neck and arms, and the entire world went completely silent. And there I was – just staring at the Alzu Petroport view point.

There’s this pool where wildlife come to graze – I remember seeing zebras and buffaloes. It’s almost as if that moment overcame all my senses that I couldn’t really digest all that was before me. Like, I was in a dream.

We got only five minutes to take pictures then we were back on the road. It was a long ride, from Nelspruit to Sandton, and I’m grateful I got to see the sunset. The sun sets quite early around here – a huge ball of fire in the sky from around 5.30 – 6 pm. It’s magnificent.

Oh, and today is the 268th day of 2017. 268/ 365.

97 days remaining in 2017.

I need to do more memorable things.

this one’s for the foodies in the house

Well that’s a long title.

But yes, this one’s for the foodies in the house.

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I had the juiciest burgers with my friend Viola at About Thyme last Saturday on the last day of the Nairobi Burger Festival. We hadn’t even planned for it, it just happened. Life is quite funny in that way; When we plan things they don’t work out, but somehow spontaneity tends to work in our favour! The idea was to have some girl time together and catch up on life. We start off light and then into heavier topics – work, life goals, books, music and TV shows.

What are you reading? What are you watching? How is your heart? Work? Family? Tell me about your dreams. Maybe with time we’ll talk more about money and finances, I just love such real conversations. I digress. Back to my foodies.

I’m salivating just typing this out because I’m remembering my teeth sinking into that juicy burger! Slurp!

About Thyme Big, Beefy, Fully Loaded Bacon Cheese Burgers

Charcoal grilled aged ‘Morendat Farm’ beef burger on a toasted sesame bun with bacon, lettuce, tomatoes & gherkins with a choice of toppings.

Had mine without the bacon of course.

Toppings: Mushroom Swiss

With emmental cheese & sautéed mushrooms

All burgers are served with fries & ‘kale-slaw’ (Ni coleslaw ile iko na sukuma na si cabbage!)

All this yumminess for Kshs. 1,500/-

Downed it with a ‘Very berry’ smoothie which was as good as it sounds.

Want to know how to top off a killer burger? Grab some donuts from Donuts World in Westlands. HEH! Acha tu!

My favourite was the cinnamon one, yumm.

Sema food coma?!

PS. Mama Rocks is still my number 1 go-to burger spot in Nairobi *drool*

block 338

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” — Mary Lou Cook.

 

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Editing these pictures reminded me of the feeling I got walking from the parking lot into the squares of Block 338, Adliya in Bahrain. It truly is a treat for sore eyes, with colour, landscaping and art at every turn. The focus of the planning is on the pedestrian’s experience, with ample parking spaces at the edges and side roads of the district and continuous pedestrian space thereafter – loved it!

My cousin Seif was driving us somewhere I can’t remember now, but decided to take a detour for ‘a few minutes’ stating, ‘Fatma, you’ll love this place’. What was supposed to be a thirty minute walk-through turned into a one and a half hour excursion into sunset. I bet you my cousins wanted to drag me away, because if you know me and my animated mind even flowers and fallen leaves are a photogenic affair.

The walls are covered in art by local artists, not restricted to just paintings but sculptures of varying scales too. Not understanding much about the Bahrain culture and politics, a few pieces seemed to have a deeper meaning, a statement of sorts, which made me question what the artist’s message truly was. For example, these cute houses all falling into a blue bin by Ali Hussein Merza. Is this a message about the abundant social housing around Bahrain? I loved their housing! But probably it was a political message I need to look into a bit more to understand. And then the ethereal paintings against black walls by an unnamed artist. On a lighter note, cartoon looking characters and random positive messages in corners were a sweet surprise. Artistic freedom in its most evident form, in my opinion. Everyone’s style is so different, and each one has qualities that are admirable and for an artist to share their work it takes courage – I respect that. Makes me think that’s how life should be – we all have something unique to contribute and that’s one of the beauties of life – the variety.

Speaking of sweet surprises, the district seems to comprise mostly of the cutest restaurants – street after street. I wish I had time to pop by each and every one as each had its own distinct character. It’s always a great idea to see and try to understand new things we come across – to soak up how other creatives interpret space and interiors. The interesting thing is although each building had it’s own character, they all seem to marry well together, forming a balanced yet eclectic mix.

I’ve mentioned before how one of my favourite things is art galleries with integrated coffee-shop/  restaurants. Well, the Al Riwaq Gallery was a page out of my fantasy art gallery mood board. I had the pleasure of interviewing Wafa al Ghatam who is a research architect currently having an exhibition at the gallery titled, ‘The Village in the City’, while I was there which I’ll share in the next post on here. I got to interact with a few other creatives and lady architects in that short period. They recommended that I try the peach iced tea from the gallery’s cafè which seems to be a hit with the customers. Peach iced tea, need I say more? (I loved it).

Not too far from Block 338 are more ‘traditional’ stores selling Persian carpets, oriental scarves, dresses and basically the ‘old school’ Arab experience. Oh and the best darn shawarma/ malghoum shops too, at a great bargain. Cravings!

Also, I feel like I’ve said gallery too much. Need to dust off a few books and grow my writing skills further.

Favourite pilgrim spots at 338?

Al-Riwaq Art Space (pictures coming up in a separate post).
Florence de Mediteranee, which is the cutest French restaurant at the edge of the district (also coming up in a post. Need to get more hours in my day!)
And uhm, basically the whole place! Wish I had more time to explore 🙂

Google maps location pin here.

Useful links to check out when visiting Bahrain:

Bahrain Authority for Culture and Authenticity.

Visit Bahrain.

Time Out Bahrain.

Take me back already, yah? 🙂