Monday, June 29, 2009

Starting over in Sidi Bou Said

Just as I thought everything was ok and 2009 is finally giving me a chance to exhale, the earth moved again. Suddenly I found myself in a new space entirely - a clean slate, another beginning. The world as I knew it ceased to exist and the only thing I could be sure of ended up being my global friends and family.

It always amazes me how things can change so drastically in a second and it has been hard to adjust so many times over the last ten years. Yet one thing I have grown accustomed to are these kinds of changes and I know by now that during these times I need the head space to process things and good friends around me to help me keep my sense of self.

So I decide to fly out of Dubai and meet up with my newest close friend Prasanti in the suburb of Sidi Bou Said in Tunis. There couldn't be a better place to start over. The Mediterranean breeze carries the kind of myths and magic that breathes life back into any old soul and the blue and white houses with the sweeping view of the ocean shouts holiday. This time of year everything is draped in waves of bougainvillea flowers. It's a wholly refreshing place to visit. Whether you stay for a weekend or a month.

"You're so beautiful," the souvenir shop house owners tell us and we don't care that it's because they want us to buy their merchandise. We feel beautiful - and happy that they keep their distance but look with appreciative eyes.

I buy a Berber silver bracelet and some perfume bottles while Prasanti chooses a turquoise stone bracelet and painted tea glasses. We eat Italian style gelato (luckily for us the Italian influence is still apparent in this area) and take our breath around every photogenic little corner, admiring the tiles and the colours.

On the way back we stop at an outdoor restaurant recommended to us as a local favourite (it's hidden right behind the gelato shop). After a dinner of fresh fish, frites and fragrant couscous with a group of very sociable travellers, I fall into a deep and rejuvenating sleep, grateful in the knowledge that I am blessed with a life rich in travels and people who are beautiful from the inside out. And that is enough.


Anonymous said...

Sjoe... things changed in a second for me and I now must stop living in a life that doesnt exist, and find my own Sidi Bou Said... And hope that is enough.

Mona Lize said...

It's never too late to start over. This world is full of wonderful things, places and people. I hope that you will have the courage to let what you find be good enough.