|Another Kasbah as we drove through the High Atlas Mountains.|
It’s Sunday morning. The WiFi signal is so poor that I had to write today’s post on a Word document, later requiring me to retype every word since the poor signal wouldn’t allow me to upload it directly to Blogger.com. I tried more than 10 times, each time receiving a message that the signal is too weak.
|In this little village, many stops contain various products with the scent of roses.|
Also, I don’t like this computer, an HP, that I purchased in South Africa under duress when I dropped and broke my wonderful Acer. I miss it if one can miss a computer. The keyboard uses punctuation from other languages requiring extra typing to correct it.
|What that a riad at the top of this hill?|
Besides, the letter “i” is still not working properly nor do most of the other keys requiring me to press the keys extra hard. Need I say that this is more than annoying?
|More villages off the road to the High Atlas Mountains.|
May I whine more, please?
I miss drinking coffee. The only means of making coffee is using the hand-operated French press Tom has mastered. However, the coffee here is just too strong for my liking, even when he uses less. I’ve switched to Lipton tea bags which I don’t like when Earl Gray or plain black tea is unavailable in the grocery stores. I don’t care for flavored teas.
|Every area had a nearby mosque as shown in the lower right in this photo. Most homes have electricity and the Internet which we hadn’t expected.|
I miss our coleslaw. It was a staple we included at all of our home-cooked dinners. Surely, Madame Zahra would make it for us, except for the fact that I can no longer chance eating raw vegetables in Morocco. I’ve given up all raw vegetables including salads. I miss salads. I don’t want to get sick again.
|The winding road.|
This riad is wonderful, as is the staff. We have no complaints, only praise for it and for them. The souk, although crowded most days, is full of life and energy. But going through there almost every day becomes redundant, especially when guarding oneself against the fast-moving motorbikes, swerving in and out.
|The views of the villages situated at the base of the mountains created beautiful scenery.|
The shoving and the pushing of the often frenzied tourists in the souk, desperate for the next big bargain, has worn thin. No wonder the locals appear annoyed and aloof. They too must have become tired of the crowds.
|At some points, the mountain rocks were less colorful than others.|
We understand why the vendors bark out to us to come and see their wares. We have to force ourselves not to look, not to smile, to avoid eliciting a response. I’d love to offer a friendly “bonjour” (good day) but doing so always seems to indicate that we may have an interest in making a purchase.
|The sky changed frequently during the seven-hour return drive.|
Oh, that we could be among the local people in a less sales orientated environment reveling in their companionship and conversation. They are lovely people from whom we could learn much. We see this from the four-person staff of Dar Aicha, genuine warmth and kindness, far beyond their duties.
|The roads and signage were more modern than we’d expected.|
It’s not that I miss the US. Of course, we miss family and friends. The pace, the place, the traffic, the cost of living, not so much.
|Much of the greenery was from olive trees with olives as an accompaniment to many meals.|
I won’t get into the fact that I miss nature and wildlife. Everyone who reads here is aware of that fact. I cling to the birds flying into the riad through the open courtyard, my Mother Nature companions, always available for a nature fix to some extent.
|Does anyone know what this means? Please post a comment, if you do.|
Now, we count the days until we leave for Madeira, Portugal. Today at 32. Grocery stores, food shopping, cooking our favorite meals with leftovers for the next day if we’d like, a better WiFi signal, restaurants with offerings befitting both of us. And then, there’s the perpetual view of the ocean from every window. We’d already seen the house in Madeira when our ship docked at the port in Funchal in April 2013. We loved it.
|The river was not as deep as it may have been a month ago with the snow melting at the mountain peaks.|
Although it may sound as if I’m unhappy here, I’m not unhappy. There are enough good things to avoid any real angst. Tom and I laugh, having fun every day. I’m finally beating him at Gin, for the first time in four countries. He beat me in Italy where we first starting keeping a countrywide tally, again in Kenya and then in South Africa. If my luck continues over the next 31 days, (we leave on the 32nd day) I may win Morocco.
|The interior of the small hotel on the river. Although not for us, with the barest of amenities, it was clean and suitable for backpackers and those seeking a hostel type environment.|
Happiness is a choice. I choose it. Occasionally angst creeps in for minutes but never for an hour or a day. It wafts away when we laugh, we talk and we plan for the future.
|The river view from the veranda at the hotel.|
We have our health. We have each other. We’re staying true to our budget. We have this wonderful house and it’s amazing people with us each day. We have much to anticipate, today, tomorrow, as we head out to further explore, holding hands, feeling comforted and safe at each other’s side.
|The river view from the window in our hotel room.|
We’ve learned a lot here in Marrakech. We’ve learned more about how we’ll respond in certain environments. With much world left to see, we’re excited to plan our future travels, now more well-armed than ever with the knowledge that the busy city is not for us for longer than a few weeks.
With the upcoming two weeks each in Paris and London, three days in Boston, six days in Vancouver, British Columbia, 11 days in Waikiki, Hawaii, we’ll have all the big city experiences we’ll need for awhile. From there, the peace, serenity, and nature are at our fingertips in our upcoming plans well into the future, as we figure out where in the world we like to live next. We’ll keep you posted.
|A map of our location on the wall in the hotel’s veranda. The hotel was located at the far-right.|
Health providing, we’ll continue on, only until we can’t do it anymore. Stumbles along the way? Sure. We accept that. Will we love everywhere we go? Most likely, not. We never expected to love everywhere we’ll live.
The challenge of discovery drives us with the hope and expectation (oh, foolish me!) that we’ll be happy and comfortable more times than not, just like the rest of us who have good days and bad, wherever we may live. That’s life, isn’t it?
Photo from one year ago today, April 13, 2013:
|Tom eating frog legs which he surprisingly enjoyed for the first time. We were on the Carnival Liberty when we arrived in Miami where we were booked for another cruise on the same ship, referred to as a “back to back.” We didn’t love Carnival cruises as much as other cruises but the food was especially good. For details of the post from that date, please click here.|