I knew I embraced the hijab early last year because I remember my first ‘holiday in hijab’ – Abu Dhabi, March 2013. But, I wasn’t sure exactly when I began to wear the hijab. So imagine my pleasant surprise when I got an email reminder yesterday telling me that today was to be the anniversary of performing Umrah and deciding – this is it – I want to wear a hijab. My past self must have sensed this was a momentous decision and worth recording for the benefit of her future self. I’m glad she did this for me. Continue reading A Year In Hijab
Climbing A Mountain – Literally
That’s the beautiful sunrise which greeted us as we approached the summit of Mount Batur. And that’s me celebrating with a well-earned cup of complimentary tea served from a shack which sits on the slope. As the sun rose, the number of climbers grew, and so did the number of monkeys.
The whole thing had been a surprise arranged by my husband. We’re not climbers and I could have killed him for planning the activity as we took each step. My thighs throbbed and the sweat danced down my back. But of course, my feelings for him changed when we finally reached the tea shack.
Looking back now, it was one of the most exhilarating holiday experiences – because we achieved something that we thought impossible at the start.
© Rabia Bashir June 2013
‘See that mountain?’ My husband asked while leading me out to the rustic balcony of our room in Kintamani, Bali.
‘It’s beautiful!’ I exclaimed.
‘We’re climbing it in the morning,’ his voice was calm.
Climbing a mountain?! Ghostly clouds crept around its summit as I watched from miles away. At first, I thought he was joking but there was something serious yet serene about his face that said otherwise. We had attempted to climb Adam’s Peak in Sri Lanka once and had to turn back from the halfway point. And now, here we were, in the middle of a ‘relaxing’ holiday, attempting to climb another mountain? The past few days prior to that day, we had been eating our way through Bangkok and other parts of Bali. I’d put on weight from all the experimenting and lack of gym workouts. How was I going to climb a mountain; that too at ridiculous-o’clock-in-the-morning?
But it was booked. Too late to moan or back out. Assuming we would simply walk around the base of it, I put my reservations aside and helped Irfan light candles on the balcony. We set up our scrabble match and cameras, ready to play and watch the sunset put on a show…
I’d deal with the mountain in the morning.
Images: Mount Batur, Kintimani, Bali © Rabia Bashir & Irfan Siddiqui June 2013