How to not celebrate Christmas...
Trip Start May 13, 2008
128Trip End Ongoing
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For a Christmas delight we attempted to navigate our way through the new part of Marrakech, the gueliz, and reach the Majorelle Gardens, which all our guidebooks had been raving about. It was certainly popular - many tourists were enjoying Christmas morning here, and once inside, we could see why. It was an electric mass of colour and plant life, beautifully vibrant, and glistening in the warm sunshine. The entrance courtyard was filled with brightly coloured plant pots surrounding a small fountain, tiled in the typically ornate Moroccan fashion, and set the scene for things to come.
Round the corner were millions and zillions of cactii, every single one in a new ridiculous contortion, it was great.
I suppose the main centrepiece of the gardens is the cobalt blue house, fronted by a cobalt blue fountain, and pond, featuring water lillies and baby tortoises. We've seen them being sold in cages in some of the souks in town so it was nice to see them in a natural environment for a change.
After walking round the gardens we sat down for a while next to the Yves Saint Laurent monument, who bought the gardens to restore them and had a house at the back of them where he lived before he died. We read our books for a while, listening to the birds chirruping, and then Mum phoned Joey to wish everyone a Merry Christmas.
On the way out Mum was reeled in by a lady selling "silver" bracelets... she obviously saw an easy target and leached onto her - she ended up selling 3 bracelets for 70 Dr, is that a rip off? I guess so, but we'll never know!
Enjoying the sunshine, we walked back into town and set about spending the rest of our Moroccan money. There was a joyous reunion with the bloke who dressed me up on our first day in Marrakech - especially joyous for him as we purchased a camel picture from him, after much deliberation. Unfortunately no rug or Berber shoes, but I guess you can't win everything. Mum was then looking for a handbag, and she recieved several less than generous offers, especially for many things she didn't like at all. She bought a nice one in the end, but obviously paid well over the odds as the bloke offered us a free present to go with it.
We didn't have enough money left to pay all of the agreed fee, and he let us saunter off with the handbag to the bank to change some more - very trusting of him! When we returned he'd obviously taken the time to muster up a very generous offer. In addition to the free gift, he wanted to offer my Mum 5000 camels and his shop, for my hand in marriage. Only 5000? Cheap git - I had been offered a whole goat in Ghana! When we got home, my Dad said he would have bitten the blokes hand off... and I'm still looking over my shoulder now in case hundreds of camels suddenly turn up in my room and take it over.
Before Mum could have time to ponder the offer, I hurried us out of the shop, free scarf in hand, and back to the hotel. Not the sort of Christmas present I was hoping for!
I thought it would be nice to complete our day of frolicking around in gardens by returning to the Menara Gardens to watch the Christmas sunset. It was beautiful again - rounded off a fab Christmas, and a fab Christmas holiday.
And to top things off, it was pizza for Christmas dinner (:D), sat outside on the balcony overlooking the main square again. Followed by nougat glace, which I was completely confused by when I saw it on the menu, but thought what a great excuse to order it, and it was lovely, a Moroccan delicacy. Perf!
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