Secrets from the Sahara : Park of “Ras El Wad”.. Chenini – Gabes
By Hatem Dhwibi
Twitter : Cool Burn Hatem @HDhwibi
I love to go to different places. Not only for the sake of their history, but also for the sake of their beauty, how they change my mood and how they make me feel, says Hatem Dhwibi.
Just an hour and a half driving from “Kébili” to the Eastern North, I went to the city of Gabes, exactly to Chenini. I couldn’t resist not going there again.
Gabes is also known by the greatness of its Oasis, very popular with the production of Pomegranate and “Henna”.
“Henna” is a plant used especially by women in weddings as a tradition, for decoration like tattoo, also used as a medicine.
“Chenini” is the heart of the Oasis of “Gabes”, there are leasure parks and zoo and some other wonderful places.
My destination was the park of “Ras El Wed”, a two years old park, the property of “mr. Idoudi Monji”, unfortunately i didn’t find him there to talk with, he went for a holiday.
Before i start talking about my day there, i will let some pictures i took speak to you first, a stimulus to your imagination.
Walking through these different places made me feel like i was in another planet.
Watch the video;
If Steven Spielberg knew about this place, he would film his movie Jurassic Park there. The majority of people who work there are women. For them, it’s not just a duty, no, they belong there, they live there as one family from day to night. “Ras El Wad” is a part of them. So easy going people, the moment you say ‘hi’, you become a member of their family.
I ‘ordered’ a Coke and “Soumaya” the owner’s wife replied :” shut up Hatem, you ask too much” and laughed. I laughed too. When you are there, you can see their sense of humour and their spontanity. I laughed and i went to get the Coke by myself. “Mounira” her friend who works there too saw that and said :” good boy, well done, you’re a family now so act like one and make yourself at home”. And as a reward, they cooked “Mtabga” and gave me one for free. Yes Lyn, there’s “Mtabga” there too.
A sense of love, cooperation, harmony, peace, “Ras El Wad” gives you.
I asked “Soumaya” about how did her husband came up with the idea of turning that place into heaven’s park so she pointed her finger behind me and asked me to turn around. There was a huge olive tree. She said :” you see that tree, “Monji” was born under it”.
Are you still with me readers? Forget anything you heard about this place and focus on that.. “he was born there”. I wonder, do we still have this nostalgia to our past?
“Ras El Wad” is not just their project, its them. That’s the case of so many places but…
I noticed that water wasn’t running there like i’ve been told it was and the reason for that is factories. Water has been malused by factories and the citizens are worried about their Oasis.
About two hours passed. I took my phone to check the time, well, it felt like two hours but i spent 6 hours and a half. People still there.. the ones who came before me and the ones who came after me, i guess they had no sense of time too. People easy come, they won’t leave. Reminds me of the song of the Eagles, “hotel california” when it says :”you can check out anytime you like but you can never leave”.
I had to leave, unfortunately or i would be late for the bus but i know that i’ll go back there again and again.
I wish authorities pay more attention to nature. Nature is made for us to survive not to destroy it.
“Ras El Wad”….. see you soon.