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Desert Songs

Desert Songs- Book CoverDesert Songs by Arita Baaijens, the once environmentalist Danish writer, photographer, and Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, offers a picturesque journey to the heart of the deserts in Egypt and Sudan, a unique endeavour skilfully narrating a spiritual, inward rather than a descriptive analysis of how life in the desert looks, feels, and goes like, if you ever, like the author did, decided to give up city life and give yourself in to the cosmic void of the deserts.

Driven by uncontrollable desire to explore the deserts in Egypt and 
Sudan and what could life in this place could be carrying for her fate, 
Baaijens came a long way from Amsterdam, the Netherlands, leaving 
behind a successful and well-achieved career as an environmentalist, to
 learn more about her own persona, embarking on a parallel journey of 
self-exploration.

The book, more of a personal diary of the writer’s daily life in the 
deserts, is not Baaijens’ only attempt at narrating her journeys to the 
deserts, she has published many works, all telling her story of
 self-exploration that went aligned with exploring the deserts, among
 other places, their nomadic culture, geographic distinctiveness and
 their many facet impacts upon her and her perception of life.

By the time the writer decided to author and prepare for publication
 Desert Songs, Arita had already spent some twenty years in the Egyptian
 deserts…

In well a organized pattern, the author takes you on many journeys and 
adventures through the desert, sharing her most personal reflections
 and inner thinking during the time she roamed from one plateau to
 another in the spacious deserts, unfolding one chapter after the other 
in her own journey of pursuit to know more about her life as she
 explores what life in the deserts is or would feel like.

You wouldn’t really feel the transition from one chapter to the other,
 smoothly and accurately woven into one book that is more of a photo 
gallery that also includes many illustrative sketches depicting the
 very same of what the text intends to deliver…

With quality images that compete with the beauty of her well-chosen 
words, Arita offers in her book not just a picturesque description of 
the desert, its nomad dwellers, and the life-enhancing impact of all 
that on her, she also provides a considerable amount of knowledge of
 the geography of that section on earth, its history, and a brief
 biography of those who took off on similar journeys to explore it.

Reaching the end of the book, you feel justifiably buoyant and
 enthralled by her experience, very much cajoled to embark on a similar 
journey on the beautiful canyons of the Egyptian deserts, for a mission 
to explore yourself as much as its to explore the desert itself,
 without the least expectation of what this will take you through or 
bring to your life- the very same message Arita intended to communicate
 through her book, i.e. how the entirety of her perception of all life 
matters swung as a result of her desert adventures…

maha

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