We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Nothing much to do or see in Casablanca so we took the long drive to Marrakesh. Hours of farm fields, scattered herds of goats or sheep with shepherds. Almost desert. An occasional mud hut or minor kasbah scattered around, and some large farm towns. Plenty of donkeys working, few tractors.
Juice vendors in the medina of Marrakesh.
More pics and brief comments below the fold -
Casablanca has a large, busy harbor
Pit stop - "Oasis Cafe." There was a prayer room with rugs right next to the men's room
Outside Marrakesh, we had a Moroccan lunch with excellent Moroccan wines. These things were the appetizers, then came platters of Moroccan chicken in some yellow sauce and platters of couscous. Dessert was that horrible Moroccan thing with crispy flat bread slathered with cream and honey.
We checked out Yves St. Laurent's garden
Driving through downtown Marrakesh
The old town surrounds the vast plaza of the medina and the connecting warrens of souks. We checked out an old madrassa in the old town:
The old city (inside the ancient city walls) is a maze of small streets and alleys
Then we took the obligatory stroll through the crowded souks, and almost bought our daughter a leather backpack. Almost all women in burkhas.
Nice to escape out into the open air of the medina and its markets and and food vendors. And its snake charmers, boxing matches, crazy preachers, magicians, performing monkeys, jugglers, musicians, amplified calls to prayers, etc.
Seemed to be a fair number of tourists around, but this is the gathering place for the whole city, it seems.
Best escape from the hubbub is this place. Great cappuccino, and you can smoke inside. Feels like the movie Casablanca inside there. There is an old guy in the basement expecting cash for him to monitor and clean the bathrooms. I gave him some Euro change. Never bothered with Moroccan money. It's fake money.
In the '50s-early 60's I spent a little time near Marrakesh, some time in Tripoli and Cairo, and even El Arish, more time in Beirut, brief visits to Asmara and Addis Ababa, whizzed through Hodeida (now called Al Hudaydah I believe), and probably some others I've forgotten. One commonality: stink.