Trip Start Apr 02, 2006
33Trip End Ongoing
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Moulay Idriss is the hill-top Mecca for Morocco. Pilgrimage to Moulay Idriss and five times walking inside its mosque is equivalent to the arduous and expensive pilgimage to Mecca.
We meet local guide, Rachid. He is Berber, indigenous people of North Africa, and his brown jelabba puts him perfectly at home in this more rural town... and nicely matches his coffee-coloured eyes.
Rachid goes into great detail as we wander the narrow streets, pointing out the Koranic school that preschool-aged children attend and the different shape of the minaret on the famed mosque
He points out a bakery - here children bring dough that their mothers have prepared. Instead of paying the baker to bake the bread, they make an extra loaf or two for the baker to sell himself. We see plenty of children scurrying along with dough wrapped in cloth.. and obviously been sent poste-haste by their Mums! The Moulay Idriss highlight is definitely going to the bakery to see the roaring ovens in action and then buying our lunch, warm.
One of the local ladies takes a shine to our deaf New Yorker lady who is an absolute sweetheart and loves scarves and beads. The lady swathes her in a headscarf, Berber-lady style and for a while our New Yorker is the superstar of Moulay Idriss.
As she would say in a thick Noo Yawk accent... "Gaw-juss!!"
I have a mini triumph of my own in the marketplace, being able to use my rudimentary night-school Arabic to order 4 bananas, say 'go ahead' to a little old lady, and the all important thank you.
The Moroccan dialect is different to my Arabic and apparently I sound super-posh but hey, at least it's coming in handy when I remember it!