A little travel maintenance this morning as we find and book a desert tour. We will have a driver for three nights and four days who will take us around to all the places you will read about starting tomorrow.
We wander towards to the market to look around, leave the medina because we want soup, find some whatever the Arabic word for uneventful is, soup, and dip back into the medina. A little more wandering takes us from soup to souk. The souk is the market inside the medina. This is that Indiana Jones shit you want to see. Narrow alleys criss-crossing with more narrow alleys; merchandise of all kinds hanging in front of worn facades with Moorish arches or other ancient designs. Bags, jewels, antiques, lamps, clothing, every possible combination of nick-nick, tchotchke, craft or necessity is splashed out, draping and hung up across a spider’s web of chaotic lanes. Above the sun streams in through a filter of randomly placed lengths of wood draped with rags, nets or sun-bleached tarpaulins. This sight is probably very high on the priority list for anyone who chooses Morocco as their destination. It does not disappoint. The hawking is present, but
honestly not so bad. We are accosted and endure an attempted mugging by guilt by a “Jewish” shopkeeper, who tries to position everything we don’t comply with as an insult to him and his heritage. We truly hate him and his style, but his shop is, again, a dreamily ideal representation of what one hopes to see in this environment; it’s festooned* with antique silver trays and pitchers and who knows what else covering every square inch of what he tells us was the last Hebrew temple in the souk. The ceiling alone was worth the price of enduring this nincompoop’s eczema of a personality. We finally choose to do a little haggling with a polite young ceramics seller.
After we have worn ourselves out venturing as deeply into the souk as we can manage, it’s time to try and find our way back to the hotel. Pete et al have told us their story of being lost for hours and finally having to hire someone to lead them back. So, we’re rightfully anxious… until the GPS on our phone shows us to be about eighteen steps from our dar!