6/23/2012

6/21/2012

Back at Legzira


After our week in the desert we spent a couple days along the coast. With a rooftop apartment in Mirleft, we headed back to the same beach I'd visited the year before, Legzira. 





6/20/2012

Moroccan Road Trip




We just ended a 5-day road trip across Southern Morocco. Our improvised route passed through thousands miles of parched, desolate country and rolling ranges of hills and mountains, peaks capped with countless old casbahs and broad valleys striped with green along the edge of dry river beds. Starting up the Wadi Sous, we crossed into the Atlas, over the Anti Atlas and down through the Draa Valley to Zagora before turning back.  After a long detour to the Ameln Valley and bizarre, blue rocks of Tafraoute, we shot further west to reach the cool breeze of the coast.

On the long haul from Taliouine to Tafraoute, it seemed we were about the only ones on the road - with a car, that is. We picked up our share of Berber hitchhikers. When Joanna took the wheel, one of our first riders was completely dumbfounded: "Never in my life have I been in a car driven by a woman." All our riders pressed us to have tea in a friend's shop upon arriving in their destination city, where rocks, rugs and camel tours were inevitably touted.

Our little blue Hyundai i10, dubbed Justin, handled more than 1,000 miles of abuse with little complaint. By the time we dropped the car back outside Agadir we'd had just one flat tire (suspiciously, a long nail had inserted itself while we were parked across the street from a tire shop in Mirleft) and one speeding ticket thanks to Zagora's finest. In better news, after stalling around 70 times across the country, most often in crowded narrow streets and with dozens of giggling spectators, I finally learned to drive stick.




























6/12/2012

Essaouira



Just hours before our Ryanair flight to Malaga, from where we'd hop over to Tangiers and spend a few weeks in Morocco, my new passport still hadn't arrived. Mailed two days earlier from Copenhagen, it should have made it the day before. Unfortunately and to much irritation, despite our having two weeks' rent left on our apartment, the landlord had gone ahead and changed the name on the mail box, meaning the passport could have been en route to the embassy in Copenhagen or gathering dust in some dead-end mail room. We missed the flight. 

Still, with an expiring Schengen visa and several more flights booked for the summer, we couldn't hang around in Europe. Within an hour of frantic flight-searching I found our new ticket out: 100€ to Agadir. Of course, we did have a few other obstacles: we were about to go broke, I still was in need of a passport, and our new flight was departing the next evening, from Berlin (not particularly close to Aarhus). 

An exhausting 24 hours of hitchhiking ensued. From the ferry port in Aarhus, an older woman gave us a lift to Copenhagen, where the embassy, which assumed the passport lost in the mail, quickly put together a temporary passport. A ferry to Germany, three more free rides south, a few hours' sleep at a doctor couple's home in a Hamburg suburb, a metro ride, bus ride, and final metro ride to the airport got us there on time, rendering our frantic sprint to the gate unnecessary. 

Landing in Agadir, we taxied to Inezgane then bused north along the coast for a few hours. We each slept about 12 hours that night in a riad within Essaouira's old white-washed medina, where we'd spend the next four lazy days.