BC: Until our next adventure...
FC: Morocco | Chrissy & Banna | do | 2012
1: Upon arriving in Spain we were tired & hungry. Before we could think about food we had multiple train stations to navigate followed by blocks of lugging suitcases on cobblestone streets. Our hotel was comfortable and there were lots of restaurant choices nearby. Around 10pm we headed out in search of food. What we found was a tucked away Tapas restaurant that would turn out to be nearly orgasmic. The meal we shared that night will go down in history as one the most amazing meals I've ever eaten. Five courses served over 2 hours coupled with the most delicious sangria on the planet. Totally amazing and the perfect start to another Chrissy & Banna adventure
2: Upon arriving at our hotel in Marrakesh, we were served our first mint tea & were instantly hooked! We lingered over our tea way too long... (much to the dismay of our host)! After we sucked down a gallon or more of tea, we settled into our room then headed out to the famous Marrakesh souks for some shopping & food.
3: Our 1st souk experience lived up to the hype! Tiny alleyways filled to the brim with unique merchandise, stray cats, shrouded women & gorgeous men! We stopped for food at a little outdoor café & enjoyed cheese bread, olives and beef with prunes. We caught the attention of a few men who stopped to chat. We noticed even more attention from onlookers after declaring that we were American. From then on, we were Canadians from Calgary. We just added an 'eh' here and there & nobody was the wiser
5: The souks were filled with handicrafts like tassels, inlaid wood products, lanterns & sumptuous textiles in every color, texture and style. We stopped to watch the textile workers & were startled by the maniac working the stove when out of the blue he started screaming something in a spit filled rage. We assumed he was yelling WELCOME TO MARRAKESH but since we weren't 100% sure., we jammed.. (We Canadians are a peace loving people)
6: We couldn't wait to get our henna on so we strolled Jemma El Fna looking for the perfect henna artist. | Lets just say the promises made to us by the henna mama's were not kept. They said the henna would last 2-4 weeks...it barely made it 4 days! Lucky for them I had yet to be schooled in the ways of Morocco, otherwise, they would have been bitch slapped with a Chrissy Evil Eye!
7: We departed for the desert on day 3 & (surprise!) I was sick. Vomiting over the side of our cliff top restaurant is something I will cherish forever. Oh and I pissed myself too...the beginnings of a perfect day!
9: We visited The fortified village of Ait Benhaddou, where we spent some time with one of the only families living in the village. We drank mint tea, visited with the livestock living upstairs & disrespected the families sacred objects... nah, they were just props from Gladiator!
10: After a long journey & my first meal since arriving, we arrived at our hotel & were thrilled to find that we had no heat, no hot water & a devil occupying our bathroom faucet. After some good drugs, a delicious dinner & a good nights rest, I was ready to face the Sahara Desert.....Sadly, all the food & rest in the world couldn't prepare me for what was next...plotting the murder of a baby goat!
11: "Cute! A herd of goats. Hmm, I wonder why Mohamed is talking to the herder, maybe he knows him? Maybe the herder is showing him how cute that baby goat is. I wonder why he's holding up his leg like that? Strange.... | "Look at how meaty his legs are..they will easily feed a family of 5. How can you turn down such a delicious tender baby goat?" | "Meaty baby goat, just what I was looking for! I know he is screaming for his mama, but just hog tie em' & toss in the back of the van." | CDO: (bawling!) "WTF" ATP: (sigh..) "She loves animals but I love food!" A heartfelt apology later, the baby was untied & sent back to its mama. I'm just glad they didn't go with plan B - tie him to the roof! | What's really happening | What Chrissy thinks is happening...
12: The Dades Valley
13: After a brief stop for lunch & a fossil quarry visit, we got our 1st glimpse of the Sahara. Soon, we would be camel trekking through the Sahara Desert to a Berber village where we would spend the night. Along the way, we would enjoy good food, dune sledding, unwelcome groping & amazing music. | Our 1st glimpse of the Sahara in the distance
14: A once in a lifetime journey into the Sahara Desert on camel back...we were ridiculously excited | And ridiculously grateful that neither of us had to ride Jimi Hendrix
16: Besides Angie's camera being dirt smacked by the Sahara & an oh so grabby Berber man, our sunset trek was perfect!
18: Happy Birthday Banna! What better way to spend a birthday than in a van for 9 hours. Not to worry, we'll keep ourselves occupied by getting pulled over by the police for taking forbidden photos, eating no less than 4 times, shopping in the Atlas mountains and discussing our love of Canada & Obama!
19: The 9 hour drive was worth it...we arrived at our RIad & cried tears of happiness! Luxurious bedding, hot shower, yummy food & acid jazz...yay for Marrakesh!
20: Mohammad was our tour guide in Marrakesh & he was fabulous! We visited Koutoubia Mosque, Tombs of the Saadies, Palace Bahia & Dar Si Said Museum. | And the shopping was Amazing!
23: Marrakesh has a unique, & vibrant feel to it; there are snake charmers wielding mystical pipes & magic shops filled with everything you need to cast a spell on a lover....or enemy. The smell of exotic spices fills the air & the Islamic call to prayer booms from every mosque in town. Each adds another rich layer to the mystique of Marrakesh, making it one of the coolest places I've ever visited..
24: After a yummy meal, we headed to the spice souk | We stocked up on ginger, mint tea, oregano, cumin, smoked paprika & our favorite, Ras El Hanout.
26: We spent our last night in Marrakesh at the Jamaa el Fna night market. We listened to live music & watched the local men dance, we nibbled on cookies, ice cream and of course...mint tea. We got in some last minute shopping & headed back to our fab Riad for a good nights rest. Tomorrow we would be in the ancient city of Fez.
27: We arrived | in Fez after a | 6hr. train ride. | Graham, our Riad host | Fez with dinner at The Clock | suggested we start our time in | Tower Restaurant. We took his | advice & enjoyed live | music, harissa soup & | our favorite, | mint tea
28: The Medina in Fez is an ancient place & upon arriving, you feel as if you've been transported back in time. Donkeys & mules rule the roads as there are no motorized vehicles allowed. Fez is also home to the oldest tannery, mosque & university in the world! Our tour guide Mohamed filled our imagination with stories of genies, evil eye's & the protective hand of Fatima.
29: It seemed that the food in Fez was a bit more exotic than what we had seen in Marrakesh. | Even so, all of the food we sampled in Morocco was amazing!
30: We toured a textile factory, the metalsmith souk & Medersa Bou Inania, the oldest Koran school in the world!
31: We learned about Anatidaephobia, toured the Jewish quarter & ate insane amounts of yummy food! | i see u!
32: We visited the tannery,(mint in hand) & blew a wad of cash on leather shit we never knew we needed. Then we toured a ceramic factory where Creepy McCreeperson requested a cell phone photo shoot with Ang then tried to sell us overpriced ceramics. We politely declined & got the hell outta there so we could check out the Royal Palace.
35: We toured Volubilis with a guide who was no less than 128 years old & hell bent on keeping our tour under 15 minutes. We did our best to ignore the subtle hints to hurry the f#*k up & wandered off so he couldn't easily find us. | Later, in Moulay Idriss Mohamed wanted to take us up the mountain, we explain that we are too lazy & don't wanna go, he insists saying its not a bad walk, we're only in Morocco once (blah blah) so we begrudgingly follow him. Next thing ya know we are literally climbing miles of stairs up the side of a mountain... Really Mohamed.....really? He made up for it by stopping for french fries & Hawai soda on the way back to Fez | Move it along bitches!
36: Meknes was a little creepy...underground jails, horse stables for 17,000 war horses, labor camps, you get the idea. | While there, we saw the Bab el-Khamis, Bab Monsour & Bab er Rih Gates, the Kara subterranean prison & Sultan Moulay Ismail stables
37: Meknes was our final stop in Morocco, soon we would be heading to Spain. Morocco was truly amazing & exceeded all of my expectations; the food was incredible, the people friendly, the geography diverse, the culture fascinating. & the men hot. Once again, Banna, you were a perfect travel mate & I cant wait to explore Africa with you again!
38: Good Bye Morocco..... | Look Banna - Magic Carpet Rides...let's go!! | I'm pretty sure we started this trip with only 1 bag each....
39: Uhhh, yah, I think its clear...you & I can have fun doing just about anything! | Hello Spain!!!
40: Spain is my new favorite country based on the food & sangria alone!
42: To my surprise...Super Masseuse showed up in Madrid! She made the long journey from Bangkok to serenade me in her dirty underwear mask. She rode the bus, played on rocking horses & frolicked in the park. I have a deep affection for Super Masseuse as she helped me thru some serious vomiting sessions in Thailand. Which raises the question, where was she while I was vomiting & pissing myself in Morocco? Maybe her mask was at the dry cleaners (let's hope so), maybe she doesn't like long road trips or maybe it was the piss that scared her off. Either way, I was psyched to see her lovely crotch face again & can't wait till she makes an appearance on Safari in Tanzania.
43: It seemed fitting that our journey should end at the very place it began almost 20 years earlier...TGI Fridays. While on a bus tour, we spotted the familiar sign & were stunned...could it be...a TGIF right here in Madrid? W squealed with delight at the prospect of having dinner at TGIF on the final night of our journey. When we glimpsed the menu it was like we were back at TGIF Waikiki circa 1996...chicken fajitas nachos, fried chicken salad & June Bugs. A delicious way to end another fricken amazing Chrissy & Banna adventure!