Created this blog to document my travels, experiences & thoughts thru Central & South America but hell plan to blog my travels to where ever. Goofy harmless Free Spirit hoping to spend most of my time with locals & enjoy the world! So hang on as I travel, drink cervezas, raise a little hell, maybe piss off a few people & hopefully not give Canadians a bad reputation! Of course don't do these things on purpose but while having a good time well "Shit Happens"!
Friday, March 5, 2010
Hell travels thru Morocco started chill then met my party buddies Mathjias & Lisa & couple others so times changed!
Ok so trying to upload pics but it's a frigging all day job cus internet is dam slow. But keep checking cus will get them up or on Picasa as time and internet permit. But shit going south to countries that I'm sure have worse internet connections. So u may have a bit of a wait.
Yeah Ok what can I say I sailed thru Tangiers which is a real shit hole. Stayed at the Hostal California. Met up with a Olaf a German guy who just graduated from Computer Science specializing in Artificial Intelligence. So a couple computer geeks from different eras met up and neither wanted to bother working in the field anymore. Olaf just wanted to travel and meet cool people while I just think all people are kind of cool or at interesting. I think Olaf wanted to hook with a girl or something but Morocco is not the place but maybe Europe, Central or South America. He didn't drink, smoke or really party so he'll have to put in more of an effort but hey nothing is impossible. He also volunteered at a local school (like I did in Kenya) teaching them computer skills. So had to admire him for that cus I volunteer too so can appreciate it when people put in time to help others.
So after a day I hopped a bus for Chefchaoen a chill village/town/city in the mtns. It had a cool Medina (old city where the souks can be found) so found a nice hostel with a 3 bed room for 50 DH /5 Euros or $7.50 CAD. I stayed a few days and had the entire room to myself.
Things were going to chill but then ran into Mathijs and Lisa who I knew from Barcelona. So of course that was my downfall as sort of chilled and had a bunch of hash everyday cus beer was not available. We ended up smoking and walking up the side of the mtn a couple days and that was nice. But the downside of the place was it was constantly raining so couldn't do much outdoor activities even if it was a real cool scenery around as the village is on the side of a mtn.
So we kind of hung out in this cool Morocoan restuarant run by Mohommad Al Mansouri. So we'd kind of use it as a meeting place every day and night. We met an Italian guy Giovanni from Florence and Jay an Irish guy teaching in England. My favorite meal at Mohammad's restuarant was Chicken Tagine which is like a chicken stew. But it was awesome cus it was his mother's recipe and had some great seasoning plus a healthy portion. So we'd eat, talk, drink tea, smoke some hash, tefa (a combo of hash and weed) and eat some more, talk to other travellers dropping in. So yeah that made up most of our day cus what the hell it was raining. There is no real cheap beer or alcohol but Mathijs and Lisa brought 2 bottles of cheap whiskey and wine for trade. But shit ended up drinking it instead.
Yeah we had a real chilled time hanging in Chefchaouen but the rain got to us. So one day 4 of us just packed up and left on the bus to Fes. But bought a Moroccan robe which i think is called Fejasa or whatever. It kind of looks like what the KKK wear so it's kind of weird to see the locals walking around in the narrow dark streets at night. But hell they're harmless but they sure like to sell travellers things or guide them. Also shit if I hear another Local yell out Japan, Japanese or karate, etc again it'll be too soon! They know maybe 3 Japanese words (same amount I know) but keep using them over and over thinking they can speak Japanese. Why the hell they keep bothering me is strange. I know Moroccans don't have piercings or tattoos so they want to check it out on me. But I'm telling people that I'm from South America so they'll get off my back.
Fes is the oldest city in Morocco and has a Medina (old city) which is quite busy. But like all of Morocco the locals keep badgering u to come to their restuarant, shop, sell u hash or weed so it can get tiring. Jay had been to Fes before so he suggested this hostel called Cascade which is close to the main gate to the Medina. I got a small room for 60 DH / 6 E / 9 CAD but who cared how big it was cus never spent any time there. The other 3 shared a 3 bed room for 60 each. We spent most of our time on the Terrace having tea, having a smoke and chatting. There are quite a few 2 week tourists in Fes so the locals treat all travellers as having and spending a lot of cash. But shit what am I going to do buying a friggin rug, bags or shit like that. Hell I bought a small portable external speaker cus lost the cool one I had from Canada. This is the type of shit that I wanted but tho the quality wasn't great at least I could listen to music when hanging out talking, etc.
It was a little more expensive in Fes than Chefchaouen but still not like Europe. So we walked around the Medina but once u see a bit of it well it was all the same. But checked out one of the Tanneries where they remove the hair of the animal hides to make leather products. This German guy told me that the average life expectancy working in the Tanneries is about 40! this is cus they use amonia and pigeon shit to soak the leather with fur on it. This stuff is pretty potent so the smell and feel on your skin can be a bit toxic. But hey at least it was a job which a few don't have. I wasn't really impressed with the leather products or the paintings here in Morocco so far. The smell and sight of all the vats of amonia and pigeon shit mix plus the vats of different dyes was quite a sight.
Met up with Joe a German guy living in Switzerland who is spending 5 months biking from Morocco thru Mauritania to Senegal to Mali. This is approximately the same route I'm taking except I'm not riding a bike. He took 3 days to bike from Chefchauoen to Fes while we did it in 5 hrs. But he got caught in a wicked rainstorm and wind so had to hang out in a village for most part of a day. We had some good discussions as he had researched the best route to take to get to Senegal. So I just got the info to decide what I wanted to do. Basically I plan to go to the big ass sand dunes int he Sahara desert near the Algerian border. It's pretty much a 8 hr bus ride to this town called Al Rissini and from there to a small village Merzauga which is basically about 100 meters from the dunes. But of course the locals are all trying to get u to do a tour with camels, food, etc. The cost to do a couple day trip is about 1000 DH / 100 Euros / 150 CAD which is way out of my price range. So I plan to pay 145 DH/ 14.5 E / 20 CAD for the 9 hr bus ride to Rissini and take another bus to Mersauga for maybe 50 DH. Then walk to the desert from the village and save a shit load of cash by not doing a tour. So depending on what there is to see may stay a couple days. Then I want to go towards Marakesch thru the High Atlas Mtns and maybe stop a couple places to see the gorges and canyons.
So the 4 of us Mathijis, Lisa, Jay and I planned to take the 9 am bus this morning. So we got up at 7 30 am to head to the bus station. But Matijis and Lisa decided they'd rather sleep so just Jay and i went to get the 9 am bus to Rusini. But shit when we got to the bus station we found out the bus didn't leave till 9 pm. Dam we got up early to find out we got the time wrong. What a piss off as we were all set to go. So I bought a tkt for the night bus which left at 9 pm and arrives at 7 am. But Jsy only hsf 7 days left in Morocco so he wanted to head to do a hike thru the High Atlas mtns. So he planned to catch a train to Marakesch and head to the mtns from there cus his tent and sleeping bag were there. So we parted company and I went back to the hostel to hang with Mathijis and Lisa but they were sound asleep so I came to the internet cafe.
So catching the 9 pm bus for Rissini and the desert for a overnight bus trip. So wish me luck cus who knows what adventure awaits me in the desert. But shit I'm sure I'll run across a lot of deserts in my trip thru Western Africa.
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