....a side trip
04.02.2017 - 04.17.2017
We still have half the day to explore more of Marrakesh so after breakfast we venture across the street to the Menara Mall. Not much different than our malls in the US so we decide to check out a new museum of fine art located somewhere in Marrakesh. We get directions and off we go. Once in the vicinity we start to look for the street and realize we have a situation. All the street signs are in Arabic. We ask a police officer who gestures in sign language...something like 3 blocks that way and right...across the street (we think). Off we go. Once we arrive on the third block....(we must be looking like lost souls) ... an English-speaking French woman (accent noted) comes up to us and asks where we would like to go. She points us in the right direction which happens to be 1 block away and across the street! We are thrilled when we arrive! It's a great little museum which just opened about one year ago. It is getting quite a bit of publicity since Will Smith just paid it a visit approximately one month ago. I love the place. We were even served an expresso and got to sit and chat with the owner about the museum. The museum contained artwork depicting everything we have seen and learned about Morocco including a piece titled Hammam. (I know what that is now!).
Time to head back to the hotel. It was suggested to us to haggle with the cab drivers to catch a ride back to the hotel and not pay more than 30 Dirham for 3 people. Rick goes to bat with the negotiating skills ... only haggling in Arabic and sign language makes things a bit more difficult. He makes the deal...we pile in and arrive at our destination. Being Americans, we decide to tip the driver. 10 Dirham. They don't tip drivers in Morocco, that's why the haggling. Oh well..who knew! He must have thought we were nuts!
We now are on our way to Essaouira, a seaport town and another adventure I've been waiting for! On the way we, once again, pass beautiful country farms and acres and acres of land. Many scarecrows in the fields...many wearing jilabas. We pass thru small villages where I capture a few pictures of the locals.
We visit a local family in one village and are invited in for Moroccan tea and to break bread with the family.
This is also Argon country....Argon trees galore where you sometimes see the goats in the trees eating the nuts. Culinary and cosmetic products are produced here by a women's cooperative. We take the tour and, of course, shop and purchase some of this delicious and beautifying oil. I also bought a Kess here...(that glove that was used in the hammam). Everyone needs one of those, right?
We arrive in Essaouira, check into our riad and then browse through the medina. This place is so laid back and relaxed...nothing like the other souks and medinas we've been to. I can feel the vibes of the celebrities who walked this town before...and can only imagine what those days were like.