Monday, February 13, 2017

North Morocco

North Morocco

The view as we were walking along the waterfront in Rabat.

Moulay Idriss at sunset. A very religious town where muslims come every year on a pilgrimage.  Non-muslims have only been allowed  recently ie in the last 100 years

Stork nesting on the Roman ruins at Volubus.

Palace in Fez.

This is Hakima, our local tour guide in Fez with the 'black soap' that you use when you go to a hammam.  She said it was mostly olive oil; it melts when you spread it on your skin in the hot room.  We went to a hammam to have a scrub, most people didn't like it, they said it was too rough.  I gave my best 'please don't hurt me' look and it was fine. 

A mosaic table, upside down, ready to have the frame put around and concrete poured.  The is apparently no pre-set pattern, the artist creates it as he goes, remembering what colours he has used.

One of the narrower streets in Fez. . 
Khalid, our Intrepid tour guide, at the local place that served camel burgers.

At the tannery, they provide a  mint leaf to hold at your nose, but we were lucky, it wasn't too hot that day.  The white stuff to clean the hides contains pigeon poop.

Chefchaouen.  Ont he left and right, under the roofed area are washing basins where clothes are washed with water funneled form the stream. 

Khalid told us 

In Marrakesh, Jemaa el-Fna for our glass of mint tea.  This was the end of our tour.


This is the view from a cafe at high tide. Below is the same view, low tide

Saturday, August 27, 2016


I went to Zanzibar for a  two week vacation in June, could have stayed there forever. It was a mix of Indian and Arabic culture. One of my next goals is to stay there for a few months.  

I stayed in Stone Town for about 3 days wandering around (eating and shopping for clothes) and then went to Jambiani, one of the quieter villages on the east coast for 4 days.  I fell in love with Jambiani and the Mango Beach Guesthouse so only came back to Stone Town to get more money (as the only ATMs are in Stone Town). One of the local expats from Jambiani was in town that day and kindly offered me a ride back.

I think the pictures will speak for themselves. In Jambiani I sometimes went 2 days without putting shoes on. My only regret is that I didn't ride a bike along the beach to the next village, or walk the full length of Jambiani through the village, will do that next time.

My first day in Stone Town I went to a spa, had a massage and scrub by a blind woman then sat down to this view to have a mani-pedi. 

Stone Town
This is Farid.  I met two young American men at the hotel who invited me on a street tour. Three hours long for $5, we saw alot, learned alot.  Farid is an activist, had a newspaper and now has a radio talk show.  Needless to say, he knew everyone.  It was Ramadam at the time but Farid bought some street food and we went to a community centre he had founded and ate there discreetly (we did, he didn't).
This is the view from a rooftop restaurant.  I was the only customer there (Ramadam) so the waiters had lots of time to talk with me .  They said they could find me a room to rent for $40 per month..
My room at the Mango Beach Guesthouse, Jambiani

My patio. 

Kiddo's Cafe.  Ate breakfast and dinner here most days. Food was delicious with a European flair.  It got dark at 6:30 so I preferred to be home by then, although most places offered to bring me back home if I came for dinner. Next time . . . .
View from the cafe

If you have trouble relaxing, the cats offer lessons . . . .

For rinsing the sand off your feet before stepping on the patio.  What TV show does this remind you of?   
Tide coming in, this was the most people I ever saw on the beach at one time.

These two guys took me out snorkelling, we went about a kilometre out, it was only 40 feet deep (or so it looked). As I was getting in, I wondered how I would get back in the boat out there and decided it was their problem (or they could tow me).
After I was done, this guy hauled me over the side of the boat like dead fish.  He then said ""Sorry I had to do that"". 

View from the Step-In Restaurant. I ate lunch here a few times, came for ice cream a little more often.  A few times the tide came in and I had to walk along the path off the beach to go home.

Hermit Crab tracks around the guesthouse each morning. I never saw them during the day.