While Mawada Al Ismaili came over from Oman especially for the 103rd 4Days Marches in 2019, Aziz Riyami had been living in the Netherlands for two and a half years. Aziz inspired Mawada to participate in the event.
The hospitality is incredible
Since he took part for the first time in 2018, Aziz hasn’t stopped talking about it. ‘Four days of walking, a whole year’s enjoyment,’ says Aziz, who sees the 4Days Marches as the perfect way to integrate. ‘The hospitality is incredible. What happens throughout the region is a real education. Schools could easily include the 4Days Marches in their curriculum as is.’
Learn from each other
Mawada also thinks that’s a good idea. ‘Fellow walkers asked me all sorts of questions, like “So, you’re the first Muslim woman in this event?” to which I answer, “No. I’m the first Omani woman to take part.” Or: “Are woman allowed to take part in sports in Oman?” Yes, of course! It’s nice to see all the interest.: it’s important to tell others about your country.’ After all, the picture the Dutch have of Oman is no more true than what the Omanis think about the Netherlands. So, aside from all the support, enthusiasm, and positive energy, the 4Days Marches is also such a wonderful event for Aziz and Mawada: you can learn so much from each other.