Quote of the Day

"We're only here briefly, and while I'm here I want to allow myself joy. So fuck it."
- Amy, Her.

Monday, 4 July 2011

The Morocco Trip: Part 1

Two days after arriving back from the sandy lands of Morocco, I've decided to share my travels with the world, or at least the small portion of it that reads DMb. So, as you may know, as part of a school geography trip, I (along with 30 classmates) jetted off to Northern Africa, specifically Morocco (no duh).  Here's a sort of commentary in pictures (and a few words) to guide you along my adventures. Enjoy!

On the plane over, easyJet no less. Pretty bumpy ride including one random hit of turbulence resembling that of a speed  hump. Didn't phase me though, and my ears stayed unusually unaffected by the changes in pressure. After about 3 hours we disembarked into the intense and humid Moroccan heat, before collecting luggage and changing money.  
This was the first coach journey, when we were all excited and happy, completely oblivious to how many hours we would end up lounging hopelessly in its not-so-comfortable warm embrace... However, Airport to Marrakech was a mere 20 minutes, giving us a chance to marvel at:
The wildlife...
The culture...
And the architecture...
There's still a lot more after the jump below!
First night's hotel, the Imilich (something like that). Decent sized beds, and was it just me or was that cylindrical pillow really comfy?
After a typical Moroccan Tagine meal (something we soon learnt to get used to), the majority of us headed up to the roof for a night time rave and a look at the city scape.
The huge mosque at the centre of the city stood out among the stars, being the city's tallest building and all.
I guess you could say things got a little lively up there.  
Guess who?
The next day was up early for a dry breakfast and a mini-tour (not to be confused with minotaur) of  Marrakech.  Here's the fountain at the city's heart, on a roundabout that divides the westernised and modern "New District" from the scantily clad and rather grimy alleys of the "Old District".

Spices were a-plenty along the Old District markets.

I'm fairly sure he's not taking a crap. Fairly....
Next stop was a little guide around a palace.
Inside there were a couple of feral cats, not to be touched. However, you wouldn't find any stray dogs whimpering around. 
A mirror is a great place to photo of a few of us! 

The courtyard, which as we were told was used in Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom. IMDb begs to differ, however...
Walls were lined with complex Arabic writing.

Make way for Noddy...
As it was a Sunday, a lot of markets were closed, but a few grocers still tried their luck. And is that a Ninja Turtles van on the right?
Prescription shades; for the bad-ass, market drifter in you.
Hour long demo at a spices shop... Dragged on a little but the chemists made a killing out of us.

Next we travelled into the High Atlas mountains, where the weather wasn't as peachy as the city. Breath taking views were abound.

Villages built into the mountain side: check.

Many Unicorns are known to wander the great heights...
Lunch that day was a strong Tagine that my T'buds just couldn't take. 

Our driver, who was a big fan of some classic Moroccan hip-hop. 

Time for a walk into one of those aforementioned mountain settlements. 
An oven, would you believe.
While walking through we were watched by the local village protector; a hero the settlement needed, but not the one they want. Her methods are brash, but she always saves the day and acts as a beacon of light to the people. What, too far?

A mosque.
One big mother-fridging ant...
And a chicken.

Bridge cross POV.
Afterwards we carried on to the mountain-bordering city, Ouarzazate, passing a famed movie studio on the way. Didn't get to go in though... 
Second Hotel, Les Jardins. Very posh compared to the last and fitted in nicely with the Arabic culture. 
Tagine for dinner, of course, after I did a little Tai Chi on the terrace roof and we all had a quick dip in the pool.  We were joined by a rastafarian dude during the meal, and he graced us with his banjo and voice harmonies. Sort of...
Live firearms on the wall. 30 teenage boys. It's no wonder half of us died that day...
And there's the sweet room we had that night. Double was mine, by the way. 
So that's the first couple of days done, but come back tomorrow and each day this week for the full scoop on it all. Hint: Parts 3+4 are sure to be corkers!

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