Friday, August 17, 2012

Day 6: Of space cakes and sleeping beneath a starry Moroccan sky

Before I start today, I forgot to mention that yesterday, up at the waterfront as we were waiting for the sun to set, a man came up to us. He was holding a tray of cakes, and had a chameleon resting on each shoulder - Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. The man was touting the cakes as space cakes, and last night during our weird up on the roof with blankets and candles but no alcohol time, we'd decided that the three of us needed space cakes to get us through the coach journey back to Marrakech. Of course, when the opportunity came, none of us actually took it, massive fail.

Anyway, this morning, we had to check out of our apartment so we took our stuff up to the roof and chilled out, playing chess and listening to some Caucasian music. The day was too beautiful to waste, so I decided to go for a walk and steal some WiFi from the Ali Baba restaurant where we ate on our first night.

Compared to Fes, this place was so safe. I explored some new streets and came across a workshop for the wooden marquetry that Essaouira is so famous for. Back on the roof, we said goodbye to James and Katy who were catching the earlier bus to Marrakech - as soon as they left, it was beach tiiime!

We left our stuff with reception and hit the sand, although by then my hunger was so great that I had to go to the supermarket to pick up some cheese and sardines to supplement the sandy tasting bread. I say sandy because the wind was blowing so strongly that there was no escaping the little gritty bits of silicon that were flying everywhere.

The guys built a pretty impressive sandcastle, which some little Moroccan turds promptly trampled, much to Big Matt's anger. To cool off, we jumped into the ocean and I took custody of Oli's inflatble ring, riding the waves like a boss.

At 5pm, we headed back to pick up our bags, and some of us got a cheeky use of our old room to get changed, although it was pretty grim to move around covered in sand and salt. We arrived at the bus station with plenty of time to go, and had a pretty uneventful journey back to Marrakech - besides me spending 50 dirham out of madness on snacks due to hunger and having to watch the guys eat pringles for hours.

As soon as we arrived in Marrakech, we were bombarded on all sides by touts, left, right, centre, all wanting us to eat at their restaurant, take their taxis or buy their wares. We made our way to the square by death taxi - I swear our driver went on the pavement at times and he definitely drove on the wrong side of the road without fear several times...

The square was absolutely packed with people, food stalls and lights. I could hear snake charmers, drums and the sizzling sounds of open air cooking. The atmosphere was buzzing, so incredibly vibrant!

We met James and Katy at the Cafe de France, and they led us to the hostel that they'd found, which believe you and me, must've been a massive feat since it was down a maze of dark alleyways with too many twists and turns to remember. The place itself was really nice and open, but without air conditioning...

After dropping our stuff off, we headed back to the square and found a food stall that Rick Stein had frequented once upon a time. The chefs there were banterous and knew so much English slang, it was hilarious!

Afterwards, we headed back to the hostel, showered, and upon deciding that it was too hot in our room, Angela and I grabbed our sheets and headed to the roof to sleep beneath the stars... :)

Second time for me, first time being that crazy Wimbledon night. Gotta love open air sleeping when its got enough to not even need sheets! :)

X x x

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