Well, if ever there was an analogy to perfectly illustrate my message about health and well being which, I hope by now, has become obvious, it is the Riad. Oh yes, my friends, I was never going to spend 5 days in Morocco without bringing home a Monday morning email tucked in my trainer!
The Riad is a place to stay. The one I stayed in was in the Medina or the old town of Marrakech. I can only describe the Medina as an enclosed spider’s web of tiny lanes crammed with stalls and people opening out once in a while into a busy square before being thrown back into the web. It’s a frenetic, exciting, compelling experience of which I loved being a part.
The entrance to a Riad is a door in a wall. There’s nothing to encourage you to open the door, no external decoration whatsoever. Open the door and the madness of the outside disappears as you enter the peace and calm of the inside. Everything we have here on the outside of our houses are on the inside of the Riad. Gardens are on the inside of these houses. There are no competing wisterias here, no keeping up with the Jones’ window boxes! Riads: plain exterior, beautiful interior.
To have internal physical and mental well being is like having the haven of the Riad in the mania of the world in which we live. Keeping fit is not all about looking great in a pair of jeans (although it can be a welcome side effect!), it’s ensuring you stay resilient and able to cope with whatever the world has in store. More often than not people comment on the type of positive day they have having exercised outdoors in the morning. Outdoor exercise over time permanently improves our mental well being as well as the strength in our abs, legs, hearts, lungs etc. I don’t even need to quote the thousands of articles I’ve read about the effect of outdoor exercise on mental resilience, you all experience it each week.
It’s good to be back and I’m looking forward to working on all our beautiful interiors, you brilliant Riads!