food and henna bringing people together
Food, henna -- and social media -- bringing people together.
I swear: Instagram is like Tinder for creatives. Especially connecting with creative culture here in Detroit. Small business owners, foodies, bloggers and other local talent with shared interests connecting through words and pictures. And creating connections in real life (#irl)...
For example, Layla, the chef of Taste of Marrakech and I met via IG and Monday, May 22 we will be collaborating on an event to bring the unique motifs and application of henna in Morocco to guests at the Antietam pop up.
Guests will enjoy a multi-course traditional Moroccan dinner and have an opportunity to receive henna in the style done on the streets of Marrakech and Fez. I have even been practicing with the syringe used there (instead of the cone common in the US).
Sharing a table and breaking bread together are common themes among community builders, activists and place-makers. The shared communion and symbolism of being nourished by the same food, conversation at the table can begin around taste, texture, memory and scent... it offers a framework for us to begin to be friends when we sat down as strangers.
Henna offers similar opportunities. There is a calmness when receiving henna, because it requires stillness to be beautifully done. We share space and trust that we are safe together. When we sit close together it leads to conversation, yes, or to a silence that is ok too. We are not often still or silent.
So henna and food are a natural pairing in shared experiences whether you come with friends or with the intention of making new ones. Creating connections at an individual level builds a sense of place-making for community.
People complain about how social media is making the world less connected personally. I would like to disagree. It's true that we show a very edited version of our lives through pictures; and a very unedited version of ourselves in words (sometimes). And yes, being anonymous can bring out the worst in people - - however. . . I have made the most awesome friends #irl.