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UAE residents talk about how they feel while being in gardens

Being amidst nature seen as a stress-busting and rejuvenating experience

Gulf News

Dubai: Many residents say they feel happy and relaxed in gardens, and that flowers remind them of their childhood.

“When I’m in a garden, I feel like I’m one of those characters in a kids’ story book,” Souad Mourtada, 20, an IT student, said. “Playful, joyful, and certain that I will overcome whatever obstacle I’m facing at that specific moment.”

She said the smell of flowers makes her happy.

“Gardenia is my favourite flower. It reminds me of my childhood. My parents had a gardenia plant in our garden, and my dad would give me a fresh flower before I went to school everyday.”

Ahmad Hallak, a 30-year-old digital analyst, said he feels more imaginative in gardens, and that he feels a “sense of mysticism” there.

“The smell of flowers connects me to good memories of spring time and I feel I am at a place full of serenity.”

His favourite flower is jasmine. “It represents purity and freshness.”

Widad Hassan, a 19-year-old mass communication student at the American University of Sharjah, said she feels happy and “weirdly at peace” in gardens filled with “pretty flowers.”

“The smell of flowers and gardens is so nice,” she said. “It makes me feel nostalgic because, as a kid, I used to play around in parks and gardens a lot.”

She said her favourite flowers are “maybe” tulips or lilies.

“They’re really pretty. I mean, obviously, all flowers are pretty. But these just have always stood out for me.”

Diane Falez Omari, 21, an international studies student at AUS, said being in a garden is “really refreshing,” and that it reminds her of her home country, Turkey, because her family home has a garden.

“I like greenery and I like the smell of fresh grass,” she said. “But I do get worried by the bugs that might be in the plants.”

“The smell of flowers relaxes me if it’s something like jasmine, but if the scent is too strong, it gives me a headache.”

She said she likes white roses. “Roses are conventional and they smell nice, but I don’t like being like everyone else, hence the choice of colour.”

Humeyra Emik, a 41-year-old who works in marketing, said she feels free in gardens. “It’s one of my favourite places to relax.”

“The smell of flowers makes me feel wonderful,” she said. “And that’s why I have them and flower-scented products all around the house.”

“My favourite flowers are lilies because they look beautiful in the sunlight.”

Abdul Aziz Ayman, 14, said he feels relaxed when in a garden. “I feel I am part of nature.”

He said some flowers have a “special scent” that reminds him of his childhood.

Tulips are his favourite flowers “because they look mysterious to him”, he said.

Ahmad Khalid is an intern at Gulf News.