Blogs from Morocco, Africa - page 9

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Magical Marrakech and a wild reunion It has long been said, that Peace Corps would be the toughest job you will ever love. Little did we know six months ago, before we began our journey/adventure, that we would be sent, for ten days, to one of the top ten destinations in the world, to hang out with the like-minded souls. They are people that we have come to know and love. They are also the 96 friends who swore in with us on March 26. And, unlike many groups preceding ours, not one volunteer has “early terminated” or “ET’d.” Our band of ragamuffins remains completely intact, even if we are in various stages of happiness. Our group’s situation says much for the support and closeness which has developed within it, which is aptly named “the stag ... read more
We have all had those nights...
What is there to say... just enjoy him.
Classic souq in Jamma el Fna

Africa » Morocco » Grand Casablanca » Casablanca June 4th 2013

CasaBlanca from June 4th to 5th.... read more
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Africa » Morocco » Tangier-Tétouan » Asilah June 3rd 2013

In the month of May, our experiences fell generally into: (1) our house and furnishings, (2) trying to obtain our legal residence card, (3) dealing with ants, (4) some training which resulted in visiting three cities, (5) warmth shown to us by people in Ksar, (6) dar chebab activity and (7) a little illness. Here are some short videos to entertain you. :) Wedding Parade Outside of our Window - Typical Conversation in a Key Shop - Our Furniture Being Made - Our House Key Being Made - So, we realized that we had a serious ant problem when they started opening the frig to help themselves! LOL! Fortunately, they are just the very annoying little black ants and not the bitey kind that really make life miserable. Regardless of the type, they love meat and ... read more
A bab - gate - in Meknes
Artisan making our furniture.
Skylight being unpainted... why would you EVER paint the glass tiles?!?!?!

Africa » Morocco » Fès-Boulemane » Fes May 29th 2013

Arrival in Casablanca, Morocco, was uneventful and after fiddling around waiting at the airport for other Insight tour passengers, we were transported to a mediocre Sheraton hotel – you know the type – gorgeous and sumptuous lobby, and pretty ordinary tired rooms. Dave was horrified at $10 NZ beers and Pringles in minibar. And thank goodness we'd bought a bottle of scotch at the duty free on the way through. We were now ten, as we met Ali and John Tocker at the airport. So our group (Vicki and Frank, Sue and Pete, Pip and Rick along with Davie and me) was now complete. The others seemed to retire until dinner, but Davie and I ventured out into the ‘ancient’ medina up from the hotel across a very busy road. This was a very busy market ... read more
Woman in surf outside mosque
Snow in the High Atlas
Davie does what a husband has to do

Africa » Morocco » Grand Casablanca » Casablanca May 29th 2013

So there we were, out in the midst of nowhere, in the desert. Desert isn’t always a series of harsh red dunes, it is sometimes grey stones for miles, or dun coloured nothing. What is amazing is that we often saw goatherds or shepherds way out there in the nothing, with their charges, along with unemployed dogs. These were sad. Dogs no longer able to scare away the wolves and protect the lambs and kids are simply abandoned as the nomads move on. They stand, pathetically, at the edge of the road and survive on handouts provided by passers by. Oh, so sad. However, we were not unemployed, and we certainly were not hungry. There was always plenty of food, and most of it pretty good. And for those who ask – yes we could get ... read more
Tangines ready for lunch
Coffee table made with fossils
Typical housing

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Africa » Morocco » Rabat-Salé-Zemmour-Zaer May 29th 2013

On Sep 21, 2011, I flew from Vancouver to London Stansted, Stansted to Jerez, Spain, and then from there, I was driven to Gibraltar. The Vancouver airport experience was one of the best airport experiences I’ve ever had. When I looked it up online, it turned out that it IS actually rated one of the best airports in the world. From there I flew to Stansted where I had the worst airport experience I’ve ever had. Everything was ghastly expensive. You have to pay to get your luggage weighed and luggage storage was well beyond anything I could afford. My connecting flight was the next day so at around 9:30pm, when the airport looked pretty empty, I went to sleep. When I woke up around 4am, I was so shocked to find that the airport was ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Grand Casablanca » Casablanca May 28th 2013

Morocco was hectic, eventful, exciting, exotic and thoroughly interesting. It is very pleasant now to lie back in the luxury of the Ronda villa (Los Alamos –with its own branded crockery and hand embroidered towels). We were simply so busy – up at 6 am and then to bed at 10 or later, that any thought of writing, let alone blogging, simply faded out of the priorities. These revolved around charging (cameras, phones, laptops), washing sundry dusty/sandy clothes in the handbasin (or bidet) and seeing everything that was on offer. Insight was way better than we experienced in Europe years ago with Brian and Mary. For a start the tour director, Hassam, was interested in his 40 charges and passionate about his country and its development. He is extraordinarily well educated and where he did not ... read more
Dear little donkeys
Our bedroom
here's looking at you kid..


Without a doubt, the easiest way to flatter me while traveling is to mistake me for a local, and be sincere about it. I am sure many have an alterior motive, anything to strike up a conversation and get me to look at their goods. But when they insist, when they tell me that I look like their brother Mohammed or Hamed, when they speak Arabic and get upset that I can't answer back, then it at least feels sincere. Never do I feel more accomplished than when I can conduct an entire transaction in another language without the vendor being none the wiser. Given my heritage, I can blend in quite easily in most countries in Europe and the Middle East (with the exception of Eastern Europe and Scandinavian countries of course), and I make ... read more
Snaking it up
Beef Tajine
1000 year old Mosque

Africa » Morocco » Fès-Boulemane » Fes May 21st 2013

Today, Dave and I decided we wanted to check out the 2nd largest city in Morocco - Fes. Mike decided he wanted to get back to Spain so Dave and I took the train to Fes from Marrakech at 9am (just about made it as it as per usual - Dave is now known as 'Mr Faffy' or 'Faffy number 2' by the way). It was a 7 hour train ride, however took longer as we were delayed by an hour and a half due to an accident - the train had hit a car! :-/ Coming out of the station was lovely and sunny. It also was very much cleaner and less polluted than Marrakech and not a donkey in site! There was less hassle from the people and we enjoyed a stroll around the ... read more

Africa » Morocco » Souss-Massa-Draâ » Zagora May 19th 2013

Today we had an excursion booked to go to the Zagora desert. Early start of 6.30am we had breakfast (consisting of many bread products) and of course Moroccan tea. The mini bus ride was a long ass drive, around 10 hours, but we had many stops and it was beautiful as we drove through the Atlas Mountains. We also visited the kasbah, Ait Benhaddou in which some families still live today (Wiki it if you fancy). Once we finally arrived to the desert, we were met by the Berbers and a bunch of camels who led us to our site. The camel trek was a fun experience. We sat down on the sand and drank tea and got to know the others in the group and the Berbers. By this time the sun was setting and ... read more




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