Creativity, Friendship + My Woman Up Podcast Debut

Ruby Josephine for the Woman Up Podcast, Illustrated by Safiyah Moulana |

If you’re alive, you’re a creative person.

-Elizabeth Gilbert

Today I am so excited to share the first bud from a fruitful collaboration with Aida Azlin- my debut co-hosted episode of the Woman Up podcast.

It is a sad but true fact that it is not always so easy to make real, deep-sea-level friends in Tangier. Between communication barriers, the gossip and drama that seem to constantly be twittering about, and the general lack of non-sketchy places to go out and meet new people, it can be hard to find someone with whom I can really connect.

The true friendships I have made have always sprung up from random and seemingly fateful sources. Being extras on movie sets, sitting in a café and spotting someone reading an English book on psychology, and emails out of the blue about contemporary dance connections.

Most recently, I have gotten to know a lovely young woman who is originally from Singapore, living in Tangier the past several years, and is one of the most loyal clients in my fitness classes at Eden Club. Yoga, dance and barre workouts- she shows up to them without fail, plus she speaks fluent English and often when you meet someone else who understands you even when you talk too fast, you tend to cling on for dear life. We started chatting occasionally before and after class about this and that, where we were from, what we did in Tangier, etc. One day she told me in passing that she runs her own online business and my ears perked up. I had to start the sun salutations, but that bit of information stuck in my brain until the next day when she offered me a ride home after class. I asked her more about this business and she launched into telling me all about The Shawl Label and this online community she has created for mostly Muslim women, but also just young entrepreneurial females in general. Seriously inspiring.


We started getting super hyped, rambling on together about website layouts, pretty fonts, curated instagrams and generally nerding out about online design and business stuff. I could not quite believe that this friendship had been handed to me, right as I’m in the beginning of building up this blog and getting more interested in creative entrepreneurship. I’m becoming a more and more firm believer in destiny and the idea that when you go into anything with your heart planted at its core, something in the universe is going to give back. My friendship with Aida has been just that- one of those rare and star-crossed chance encounters in Tangier.

Since we originally bonded over our mutual creative spirits, we decided that choosing creativity as our theme on her Woman Up podcast was a no-brainer. It is what I tend to write about here in this blog, not to mention what I eat, sleep and breathe.

In this first episode, we discuss what being a creative individual means to us and how to live a creative life, sharing personal anecdotes, stories, bits of inspiration and giggling quite a lot. It also includes me awkwardly talking about how sometimes I have to make it very clear to certain people what kind of dance I do, so that they don’t get “the wrong idea.” If you are also a dancer in a country where modern dance is not really a thing, you will probably feel me on that one.

Not only am I excited to share this first episode, but I am so honored to be among these other four amazing, strong and diverse women who make up the Woman Up squad for this season. You can check out the whole lady crew over here.

So without further ado, check out my podcast debut below, or listen at The Shawl Label or on iTunes!

I should mention that because I’ve had so much fun already recording these episodes with Aida and I have been so inspired by various other podcasts lately, I am starting to brainstorm launching one of my own. This idea is really at the baby seed of conception right now, but I would love any and all input. Is there anything in particular you would be interested in hearing me chat about? People to interview, subjects to breach? Let me know in the comments!