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Day 17: Saturday April 16, 2022 – Marrakesh Express

Today we leave Essouira and return to Marrakesh.

Here is how we see Omar every day. He has a crick in his neck from turning to the left to talk with us.
Here is what Omar sees.
One of our travel mates wanted to see white goats in the argon trees. This man chains them to the trees and charges people that take pictures. Neither G Adventures nor us support this unnatural practice and cruelty. I took this from the bus as we passed by about 4 places who did this.

In the hot, dry flatland, olives, figs, and almonds are grown. In the mountains, cherries, apples, and walnuts are grown.

Omar had never seen an avocado growing up but now they are grown in Morocco. The same is true for the banana. In 2004 – 2006, the king devised a new plan for agriculture which also includes water usage and dams.

We went to some gardens connected with Yves Saint Laurent. There were so many people in line, all tourists, mostly French.

Virtually all of the cacti had blooms. I tried to catch this bee in the act.

There was also a fascinating Berber Museum full of artifacts from the various tribes.

The Berber language, an Afro-Asian idiom, is the melting-pot of the history and culture of the country. It has outlived most languages of Antiquity such as Ancient Greek, Phoenician, Latin and Egyptian. It used to be written but is now mainly oral. Though there are fewer people now that can speak it, the language is nevertheless still used by a substantial number of Moroccans. A true symbol of identity, the language crystallizes political demands and unleashes passions. The recent recognition of the country’s Berberity would seem to signify a will to preserve the language for future generations including its ancient alphabet called tifinagh.

All Berbers know their own Berber language but also Arabic and French which is taught in school.

Here is our best efforts, Arabic first followed by Berber. Whenever I would use a Berber word, I would say “I am Berber”.

Coolshimzien – everything is good
Mushi Mushkil – no problem
Habibi – dear one
Waha – okay
La – no
Shukran – thank you
Lela saida – good night

Tifaouin – good morning
Timinsiouin – good night
Azul – hello
Tenmierrt – thank you
Labass Bikhiiir – I’m good
Hamdoulah – thanks Allah
Mamnek antgit – how are you

We will stay at the same hotel where I left a few things that I didn’t need to bring with me on our travels through the country.

We spent the afternoon lounging by the pool. The water was cold but the air temperature was 92°F. It is always awkward when talking to people from anywhere except the USA. When they tell us the temp in Celsius, we get that quizzical look on our face trying to do a quick calculation.

Tonight was our final night in Morocco. We started the evening by having drinks at La Mamounia considered the best hotel in the world.

Later, we went to have a final meal in Morocco. Tangine and couscous are favorites in this country.

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