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Milk.xyz Travel Diary: Anaa Saber Returns to Her Roots

A sample spring itinerary for your average NYC cool kid went down as follows: Coachella, Miami, Brooklyn, and back again. Going against the grain was blogger Anaa Saber, who, returning to her roots, traveled around the world to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. What followed was a Middle Eastern experience like no other, complete with a faith-centered pilgrimage, colorful market trips, and, of course, family reunions which reminded Saber “not to take life too seriously” (a note which only gets more relevant as the stateside political turmoil continues).

“When most people think of Spring Break, the first thing that comes to mind are tropical islands, bikini bods, and sipping Piña Colada’s while tanning in the sun. On most occasions that would be the ideal vacation, however, not this time. This break happened to be my final spring sojourn in my entire college career…which meant I had to go somewhere noteworthy. As a New Yorker, the hustle and bustle in the city sometimes becomes overwhelming, which is why a break is much needed.

“The first stop on my Spring Break itinerary was Saudi Arabia. This was my second time visiting Saudi, however the first time I was a little girl so I really had no recollection of the visit. The main purpose of my trip was visiting the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. As a Muslim in America, oftentimes faith becomes pushed to the side when working, going to school, and living the NY race (which, to be honest, is the case for any religion). I was fortunate enough to visit these cities and rekindle my faith. Being there was a humbling reminder to stay forever grateful and blessed for all the myriad opportunities life has offered me. A few photographs depict the mosques and people from all over the world, remembering God, united as one.

“The final stop on my trip was also the place most vital to my identity: Pakistan. Going to Pakistan always brings me back to my heritage. It’s the place I love most, and contains the people I love most. A majority of my extended family lives there, so when I go I’m always surrounded with cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. There is nothing better than family and, to me, being with everyone there delivers strong feeling of warmth and inner-peace; the feelings that come along with being home. Every worry I have in the world instantly disappears. People are so relaxed and down-to-earth there. Being in Pakistan is a constant reminder not to take life too seriously.

“Here are some photos from my trip: little alleyways, shopping in the bazaar, and food. I hope you can enjoy the beauty there just as I did.”

We’ll let Saber’s photos do the talking; see them for yourself, above.

Images courtesy of Anaa Saber

Stay tuned to Milk for more visual recaps. 

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