Monday, October 14, 2019

Intrepid Travellers

A têtê-e-têtê with THE DILMUNI COUPLE Hussain and Mariam

Imagine beginning your morning with a traditional Bahraini breakfast followed by a unique tour filled with surprises across our pearling island!!!

And for those who ask what is of so much interest on a little island nation like Bahrain, Mariam and Hussain have the answer, “You might actually want to come out of your comfort zone and take the experience with us.” They are the Dilmuni Couple, renowned for their exploration around the Kingdom of Bahrain on foot in just five days from 3rd Feb 2015 to 7th Feb 2015.

Hussain and Mariam discovered that they share the same passion towards travelling and adventure while they were visiting the beautiful valley of Kashmir in India during their honeymoon in 2012. And there began the story of the Dilmuni couple!

“We had planned our vacations last year but due to some reasons we couldn’t make it,” Hussain begins, telling us about their micro adventure. “That is when I thought, why not take a look around our island and know more about our place.”

“He then shared this idea with me about travelling around Bahrain on foot. I thought that was pretty amazing,” adds Mariam. “Whenever vacations come, everyone tends to make visits outside our nation. And this one time we decided to see in detail our motherland – Bahrain.

“Also, it is part of our habit to take our cars wherever we want to go and then complain that there is nothing much to see in this country for more than a day. But when we started our walk, it was really all about taking the roads less travelled.”

“Mariam is right…” Hussain joins in. “While we were walking around with our back packs like tourists and talking to the people here, we were amazed to know about the rich heritage and culture we are lucky to be born into and unfortunately we don’t realize it.”

Referring to the hospitality of the people of Bahrain they said, “We were glad to have so many people inviting us to stay at their home. But we preferred staying outdoors in camps which gave us a better chance to be with nature.”

The couple had invited many of their followers to their camps every night. While sitting around the camp fire with hot tea offered to everyone, they shared their day’s experiences with their visitors. “Even though our families were a bit reluctant at the beginning about our decision of exploring the Kingdom; we were surprised to find them at our camping site on the first night of our journey with home cooked dinner. That gave us all the energy we needed for the days ahead.”

Mariam, who is an avid blogger has penned down every moment of their travel in their official blog ‘Dilmuni Couple’. The blog also speaks about numerous other journeys that this incredible couple have undertaken. Remembering an amazing 20 day road trip they had to Saudi Arabia, Hussain said, “We took this trip before our Bahrain quest. We had sent a proposal describing our expedition to several organizations requesting support for a high end vehicle that could help us better in the deserts of Saudi. And there were positive replies of support from different places.

“But it was difficult for the companies to arrange the desired vehicle at short notice and we could not postpone our journey dates. We are really thankful to all those organizations that showed the willingness to support us. Nikon provided us with their latest camera and we began our Saudi exploration in our small family car.”

Mariam continues with a smile, “When I told my colleagues about our trip to Saudi, they actually asked me what there is to see there. But after they read my blog, two of them are now planning to take the same routes we took. We, as citizens of Bahrain are lucky to travel to Saudi without much restriction and not to explore such a wonderful nation even when we have the privilege is too bad. This is one great nation which is blessed with our most holy pilgrim places and places that are also of cultural importance. ”

Hussain notes, “After reading our blog, one of our Saudi followers invited us to take a trip across the eastern province. It was a unique experience and we were even invited to stay with his family.”

The couple’s travel blog has been an inspiration for many since they started journaling the adventures they have had together. And with the recent addition of Bahrain to their travel list, the couple gets calls every day from people all over the kingdom; expatriates and natives alike, for familiarization trips across the kingdom. “Our trips don’t include the National Museum or places that people go to frequently. It includes places inside Manama or Muharraq that people rarely visit. We also include farms to show an entirely different face of Bahrain. We make sure that the visitors get to take fresh organic fruits and vegetables that are special to our Kingdom,” says Mariam.

Hussain informs us that they also take groups to visit the weavers at Bani Jamra. This is one traditional craft of Bahrain that is fast disappearing. There are only 2 brothers who are currently working on it and unfortunately their children are not eager to take up this profession in the future. “When we used to take visitors to them, initially, they didn’t know how to respond to the visitors or help them about the place. But gradually they changed and became very welcoming. Especially with the visitors buying their finished goods, it is a big boost to their craft. This is also us being socially responsible to the society we are part of,” he says.

To find out more details about their travelogue and to take a trip around the island like never before, you may check @dilmunicouple on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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