Do you like black or white? Sahara – second photo story

As promised  I am continuing with my tribute to Egypt and to Egyptian people. I chose Sahara (صحراء) for my photo story this time. Sometimes it is not difficult to learn some Arabic words: Sahara means desert in English.  You will remember that now, right? :-)

Well, I always imagined that Sahara looks like this:

Sahara typical

with travelers in big cars going through:

Car in dunes

But then I was told there exists also black and white Sahara. Yeah, right!

I was not able to imagine this and I was eager to see both of them.

Therefore, I decided to go there at the first possible occasion. I traveled to Bahariya oasis by bus where my guide was waiting for me. After a nice lunch in his place we were finally on the way to Black Sahara. We climbed one of the mountains, our guide was not with us, it was Ramadan and he would not survive climbing up in such a heat without drinking water.

The mountain was quite steep and my shoes not really the climbing ones…

Black Sahara climbing up

But it was worthy the view from the top was amazing:

Black Sahara view 1

Black Sahara view 2

This is a closer look to see why the “volcano” shaped mountains are black.

Black Sahara - closer look

And then it was time to continue our journey to White Sahara. It was very hot and sun was shining strong…Sahara's sun

But fortunately Bedouins know cold springs and we went for a swim. It was very refreshing after our hike.

Sahara spring

The White Sahara was breath-taking:

White Sahara 1

White Sahara 2

Especially when the stones started to change their color from white to yellow and orange with the  upcoming sunset.

White Sahara 3

White Sahara 4

White Sahara 5

The sun was disappearing…

White Sahara 6

Stones’ color changed to pink…

White Sahara 7

It was time to find a place for our overnight stay and prepare dinner.

White Sahara 8

Our guides could finally eat and drink after a long day driving us around; and we enjoyed a cup of tea together with them after their prayer.

White Sahara 9

White Sahara 10

We shared leftovers of our dinner with foxes with long ears and it was time to say good night:

Foxes in White Sahara

The day was over but other adventures awaited me the next day. I had something beautiful to look forward to but I did not know it yet:-)

White Sahara - good night

To be continued…

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My tribute to Egypt – first photo story – welcome to Egyptian Greece

I apologize for taking a longer break from my blogging. I was following up the situation in Egypt very closely but to be honest I did not feel like to write another politically focused article or analysis. I have read so many of them from different sources, different perspectives in past few months and I think enough is enough.

Instead I decided that I will show you how beautiful Egypt is thanks to amazing people who live there. I know you might have another picture in your head from the news full of violence but please bear in mind those are only chosen frames which do not portray the whole country and people.

Therefore this is my first photo story about the place I like, more will follow.

This is my thanks to all Egyptians who make their country so great.

This is my tribute to all who died innocently in the fights for better future. Rest in peace.

I hope there will not be needed to spill more blood!

Welcome to Egyptian Greece

Welcome to Egyptian Greece

Thanks to my friends, they know who I mean; I visited a “secret” place near Cairo. Why I call it a secret place? Well, it does not have any website, it does not need any promotion, you have to be invited to come or you have to arrive with a person who is well-known there but surely it does an amazing job not only in women education… I personally call the place my Egyptian Greece.

I think it is very easy to understand why:

Egyptian Greece

Egyptian Greece

Not only that this place looks very nice and cozy but people are very friendly here. They  welcome you with a big smile and when they find out it is your first visit, they show you everything.

This place is self-sufficient with almost everything, starting with food, ending with medicine. Everything is produced ecologically (I think I ate the best raisins from here in my life!).

I must say that lunch we were invited to was very tasty and the environment breezy and sunny:

Kitchen

After lunch we looked around and saw famous herbal laboratory; they prepare different kinds of tea,  soaps, medicines, shampoos, anti-mosquito sprays… anything you can think of.

Herbal laboratory

You might say, well, there are many places like this, but let me continue, you can relax with a nice book:

Library

on the balcony with an amazing view:

View

And if you like you can meditate in a special meditation room:

Meditation room

For some people this would be enough for a nice relaxing week or weekend but what about some education? There are many meeting rooms and many educational workshops going on here.  They focus mostly on education on women and men regarding the human rights. Some of the locals are even enrolled in a bachelor program in human rights in cooperation with one of the french universities – of course it is taking place here.

Meeting and dining room

For people who want, there is also the place of worship:

Church

But it is not required to come here, you can rest soundly in your house:

One of the rooms in the house

And the cost? It depends on you, you can stay as long as you want; you will have a place to stay in one of the little houses – you saw its bedroom above; food to eat – you can come to joint breakfast, lunch, dinner; you can swim, relax and meditate as you wish; and the cost depends on you. I am not joking: you put as much money as you think is adequate or as much as you can afford in a cash box before you leave. Nobody controls how much you put, it is entirely up to you.

And how was this place founded? Behind all of this is a dream of one person, this man was born in a poor family but he was thought to share. He  never forgot and made from it his dream; he created this place with help of others who believed in his dream  All this because they believed in his dream.

So never stop dreaming and make your dreams come true!

View with the church

Women in Graffiti: A Tribute to the Women of Egypt

I really do like this: the Arab Spring did not mean awakening of Arab women because they “had been awake before”. You are amazing – Egyptian women!

Read more in this re-blogged post:

suzeeinthecity

It’s a battle, being a woman in an Arab country, but perhaps the dire conditions makes us fighters. Since January 25, so many foreign reporters have waxed on about the awakening of Arab women in the Arab Spring; and how the revolutions liberated us/made us wake up and smell the coffee/made us throw off our headscarves and run happily through the meadows.

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