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Published: July 18th 2008
Hello! Kelly and I are now in a town called Essaouira, which is about an 8 hour bus ride from Casablanca down the west coast of Morocco. Getting off of the bus was quite overwhelming! It didn't appear to be the quaint ocean town we had read about. The ocean was nowhere in sight and it was dirty and dusty. There were people everywhere trying to get us to go to their hotel and women with only their eyes revieled trying to get us to look at their goods for sale. It was hard to read the level of "friendliness" without being able to see smiles under the material. Luckily, we had already booked a room at the Essaouira Hostel and we were picked up by someone who works there. The hostel is located in the medina. The medina is wonderful! It is a little village behind huge beautiful plaster looking walls. It has winding alleys leading to more winding alleys and the architechture is gorgeous. Once we got past the fear of it, we have found the people to be extremely friendly. We stayed at our hostel for dinner the first night because they made all of their guests sangria
and couscous. We ventured out later with 2 great British girls we met and one of them was offered 100 camels to be his wife. It was pretty funny because they said a few days ago one of them was offered 5000 camels so she told him his offer was "rubbish".
Today we found our way to the beach and it was a perfect day for it. After that we went to a hammam, which is a place where Moroccan women go to get, well, cleaned. It was a pretty crazy experience. First, we were led to a steam room and then the women scrubbed us with coarse pads. I was thinking, "ouch, ouch, actually that feels good, ouch, good, ouch, good". Needless to say, I have no more dead skin! Then they covered us in a cleansing mud and then we got massages. I felt unbelievably clean and soft afterward. Moroccan women have no inhibitions about showing their bodies to other women and often visit hammams as a showering routine, sometimes due to not having available baths at home and it is also a social time for them.
Tommorrow we are heading to Marrakesh. I hope all
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