3 May 2014, Saturday
Being away for just 10 days and knowing I won’t be home for another 2 weeks, makes me miss home terribly. Anxiety kicks in as I was nearing to the unfamiliar zones (Ronda and Morocco). It started the moment we exited from Ronda train station. The road was empty and quiet, worryingly too quiet. No cabs. One of the train employees told us we need to call for one. I was about to make a phone call until one cab drove in to drop his passenger.
We were warmly welcomed by a cheery “Welcome Sumarni!”. Anahid had such an infectious smile and laughter. She walked us up to our room and gave us some tips.When she saw us still in the room half an hour later, “Girls, why are you still here? You should be going out. Go explore!” Immediately, I was reminded of my mum.
Baraka B&B is within walking distance to all sights. But the hopeless map-reader me got lost again. For normal people (I’m odd), I’m sure it would be an easy task.
We explored the town – El Tajo Gorge, Puento Nuevo Bridge and Plaza de Toros. The view of the white villages and vast greenery was breathtaking for this city girl. How I wish there were halal cafes and restaurants overlooking the valley.
Ronda has an unexplainable historic charm especially in the old town. Probably this was what attracted Anahid to leave her hometown in Lebanon and reside here. We had enough walking and needed this 1 night to slow down our pace before we go back to full gear the following day to Morocco.
4 May 2014, Sunday
Anahid sat down with us at breakfast of toast and coffee. In that short hour, we shared a lot about her past career as a PR trainer, her children and grandchildren in the US and about life. She said how in life at times, we need to listen and follow what our hearts say, like what she did. She fell in love with Ronda, bought this house and converted it to Baraka B&B. She never regretted one bit. Through this B&B, she meets travellers around the world. Anahid is such an inspiration. I hope, I will have such an inspiring story to tell my children and grandchildren.
It was harder than I thought to say goodbye to her. We hugged and kissed like we had known each other for long. It’s unfortunate that I do not have a photo of this wonderful woman, as our camera was accidentally in video mode! Till we meet in the future Mama Anahid.
Morocco here we come!