You know that feeling when you look for your glasses all over the place but you can’t find them anywhere. Then you pass by a mirror and there they are, on your face, the whole time? I had that feeling at “Fekra” ecovillage south of Aswan, Egypt!
In my open ended journey around the world, which started in early 2017, I found myself gravitating more towards Nature, ecovillages, intentional communities… anywhere where people strive to live in harmony with mother Nature. Such places are healing, inspiring and beautiful. My mind, body and soul find comfort, peace and joy in them. Nature releases toxins, contractions and stress. I was lucky enough to enjoy such magical places all over the world, except in Egypt. Then, on a random invitation from my friend Mongy, I went to Fekra ecovillage in southern Egypt. Not only is it an ecovillage right on the banks of the Nile river, it’s also where people speak my mother tongue, cook my childhood foods, get my jokes and I felt a warm comforting familiarity! I was like a kid in a toy store: walking barefoot, working in the fields with my bare hands, planting trees, swimming in the Nile, picking guavas from the trees and eating them, dancing, playing “Big Talk Game”* with people who became instant friends, eating healthy foods, enjoying boat rides in the Nile, learning about birds, befriending the locals and learning about their culture. What a magical journey! People in southern Egypt are known for their authentic generosity, kindness and hospitality. They definitely over delivered on all accounts. Fekra (means “idea” in Arabic), is the brainchild of Aboda (Abdelkhalek Elbetity) who used to work in the hospitality business. He knows how to make his guests feel welcome. The buildings are built in the traditional Nubian fashion which makes them retain a comfortable temperature regardless of the weather outside. Well maintained fields of vegetables and fruit trees surround the buildings and a beautiful gathering space, “El Mogren” tells of local stories and culture.
Egypt, for me, used to mean big crowded cities because that’s where family and friends live. Now, thanks to Fekra ecovillage and its amazing people, I found a new meaning to home, right under my nose 🐽.
* Big Talk Game is a connection app: https://unconditionallove.blog/2022/02/10/big-talk-game/
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