We left Casablanca for a 3 day, 2 night trip to Marrakech, Morocco. It was about a four hour drive from Casablanca to Marrakech and along the way we watched the terrain change as it became hotter and drier. In the foothills there were interesting villages that looked as though they were made of red clay and rocks. They had a perimeter wall to keep the animals in and tiny rooms which looked like little homes.
When we arrived in Marrakech we rode camels in the palm groves to a local Moroccan house where we had a typical Moroccan lunch of salad, chicken tagine, couscous and Moroccan cookies. It was delicious, but it was definitely different to eat with your hands out of a huge bowl in the center (Nancy's sister Paige would have just not eaten!).
On the way back from the Moroccan house we rode in dune buggies. Geno drove and tried to scare Nancy and when we got back our whole group was covered in red dust. When we took off our sunglasses our eyes were white but the rest of our face was brown... YUCK! But it was fun.
Then we came to our hotel to check in and had another great meal (all we do is eat) and went to bed to get ready for a day of touring Marrakech.
We woke up this morning and toured all the sights of Marrakech. We saw the mosque, the palace and a royal tomb and of course we went to the Marrakech market. Check out the Marrakech pictures!
The market was so overwhelming and awesome. There were snake charmers, acrobats, monkey trainers (one of the monkeys urinated on our student), fruit stands, games, storytellers, Berber gypsies, and a maze of market stalls. We were getting nervous because we got a little lost and ended up on a quiet street, but we eventually found our way back to our group for the meeting time. The market vendors were VERY pushy. But they have to be because this is how they make their living. If they see you taking a picture of their act, they will take your camera until you pay them or delete the picture. You had to really stand your ground and watch your belongings because there are a lot of pickpockets! But, it was really fun. Morocco is fascinating!
-The native people of Morocco are Berber. Their language was first written down in 2006 and now all school children must learn Berber, English, Arabic, and French in elementary school
-You cannot take pictures of uniformed officers in Morocco