All posts filed under: Adventure

An Interview with Sabah and Muneera of ‘Black Muslim Women Bike’

MZAB magazine caught up with Sabah and Muneera exploring their outdoors initiative ‘Black Muslim Women Bike’. Read on as we explore the minds of these two adventurers and the inspiration behind this initiative. Who is behind Black Muslim Women Bike? Muneera: Black Muslim Women Bike started almost by accident, I started cycling just before lockdown when advised to do so by the doctor due to an on going injury I had from running. I was told I need to build muscle and I may never be able to run again which was devastating because I had been running on and off since about 2014 when my friend Nisa Ali come to visit me in the UK and told me about a triathlon she was training for. I was looking for ways to keep fit, I can’t swim, I didn’t have a bike, so running seemed like the easiest thing, all I needed was myself. So when the doctor told me that, I thought at least I can try cycling. Good thing, in terms of timing, …

Without a thought he walks…

Almase is a young writer based in North London who enjoys writing stories and micro-fiction Without a thought he walks… His brilliant cloth sways in the rhythm of the wind, his ebony skin complimenting the colour. The yellow sediment encircles his earthy brown sandals effortlessly rising to remove clarity from the man’s view. Helplessly, he clings to his cloth just a little tighter, his almond eyes squinting at the unforeseeable expanse. Just as the wind gathers strength its energy is unleashed and the sand  particles instantly drop to the surface, his independent cloth stills and the wind echos its dwindling howls into the distance until it sleeps to wake again. Burning from the inside out, his legs gradually reach the surface, quietly, he sits. Old age has overcome him, becoming undoubtedly noticeable from the milestones reaching the top of his face to the bottom and his salt and pepper hair; yet he is young- in the hope of getting younger as each day passes.  Minutes pass and as he searches through the backless sky, a gesture …

Hana Mahmoud Mohamed Saey: The Soul of Palestine

SANCTUARY Two years ago, for the third year of my History and Arabic undergraduate degree, I had to choose from one of four Arab cities for a year of study abroad. I chose Nablus in Palestine. I had an idea of what my trip might be like. From a distance, Palestine somehow still felt very familiar to me. Palestine was frequently in the news for starters, often at the centre of tensions within the Middle East. But also, as a Muslim, and as the daughter of a Christian mother, for me Palestine was very much at the centre of another type of world too.  JERUSALEM It was just after dawn. Daylight was bleeding into the night sky as the moon began its slow descent into the horizon. Crowds of people quietly rushed through the narrow and winding market streets of the Old City, making their way to the Eid Prayer at Masjid al Aqsa (the Furthest Mosque). Worshipers were dressed in their finest attire and the smell of musk filled the air.  My friend took …

Scent As A Sanctuary: Aromatherapy Amongst The Tuareg

Plants have always played a vital role in the physical emotional and spiritual well being of human kind. The Tuareg of Niger are an example of a people for whom scent plays a major role in everyday life, exchange and kinship. The Taureg are a nomadic people largely scattered across North / Northwest Africa. They can be found in Mauritania, northern Nigeria, Libya, Mali, Burkina Faso, Tunisa, Algeria and Niger. The Tuareg are instantly recognisable as the ‘blue men’ due to the blue cotton turbans/garment (tagelmust) the men wear to protect their faces from the harsh sandy terrain. The Tuareg speak Tamacheq, are largely of Amazigh ethnicity and form a system of clan membership largely practising the religion of Islam. The Tuareg of Niger like many other civilisations before them heavily use the power of aroma, aromatherapy and scent as a part of their sociocultural systems and local sociability. Anthropologist Susan Rasmussen in her 1999 paper ‘Making better scents in Anthropology’ analyses culture from the underexplored standpoint of the circulation of aromas. In her essay, …

Dreams of Rural Senegal: Starting a Bio Farm From Ground Zero

Assietou Diop is a French agronomist, based in La Rochelle specialising  in the management of rural territories. Read on as we catch up with her about a project close to her heart. “Sanctuary” … I think it’s important for everyone to be able to introspect, question and not be afraid of loneliness. It is in solitude that we learn to really know ourselves, to improve, to evolve and to refocus on what is really essential for us, by distancing from the world around us as well as those who can influence us, sometimes in the wrong way. From my point of view, too many people are afraid of this loneliness which is nonetheless at certain periods of life essential not to lose oneself. “Solitude is the nest of thoughts” as a Kurdish proverb says. I was born in Bordeaux (France) and grew up in La Rochelle. My father is Senegalese and I bear the name of the mother of my paternal grandmother. My name comes from a character from the Qur’an “Assia” who was the wife …