Updated: Feb 27
I find myself lost in a hot alley in Stone Town, Zanzibar. A local wood carver hammers away on a jewellery box while mopeds leisurely vrooms past. Now and again my eyes meet a local's and our souls hug with a smile.
"Jambo", I return a greeting from a local passerby. I feel alive, inspired and free...
I feel as if I can get lost here for a while. Time stands still. No timeous routine chores or rushing - "pole pole", meaning slowly, slowly.
Old town swallows me, teasing me to explore further into her beautiful mysterious cobble streets. What lies behind the next corner, behind the next antique carved door? I am in love with this Spice Island and all its aromatic flavours. A passion for Africa surely pulsates in my veins and I feel grateful to be found in this corner of the world.
I am fortunate enough to share my gazes and new adventures with two kindred spirits. Mi-Anie - a chef and friend inspires me with collective creative snapshots with her eyes and reveals a bit of her soul. Monette drinks in the new aromas and culture and burns it in on her lens. We stroll around the city with our guide, Haji, who paints a very vivid picture of the past slave trade and traditions.
We visit an ancient Persion Princess Spa Bath (Hamamni Persian Baths) and I can't help to envision what it must have been like for these royal women in the 1870's.
We stroll around the market where fresh spices and fresh fish are sold and I'm amazed at the abundant display. Saffron, Turmeric, Cardemom, Coffee, Nutmeg, Lipstick fruit, Coconuts - the smells are intoxicating!
We set off to find fresh flowers; after all I am here to do a Wedding Styled Shoot. I quickly realize that there is no such thing as a flower market so some locals run off to pick me some exotic blooms. They deliver the most amazing amaranthis, gloriosas and heliconias. Grateful we set off on our long ride back to Xanadu to play with our beautiful blooms.