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Marrakesh Express

One of the nice things about spending the night on a sleeper is wakening up to discover that none of the other people in your compartment have murdered you during the night. Delighted about this I set off to find the port in Algeciras and buy a ticket to Morocco.

Surprisingly, it felt cooler there than its been in Ibiza; it was also overcast and once we had left the port the seas began to pick up. I had forgotten just how much weather the Straits of Gibraltar got; that and all the supertankers thundering past at 30 knots made me glad not to have the boat there. The jagged mountains of Morocco were ahead and it felt exciting to be going somewhere new and different. When we docked, however, everyone apart from myself and an old Finnish couple were allowed off - we had to wait for the Commisarriat to come and stamp our passports.

Eventually, though, we made it ashore as well. I managed to dodge some touts, walked up into town, and suddenly found myself in the middle of the Medina, the only white person around. I felt the shock of suddenly feeling very foreign, surrounded by Moroccans, Berbers, stalls full of brightly coloured crafts, and people trying to sell me hash. My instant reaction was one of wanting to get back to the ferry, but instead I found somewhere to chill out and had something to eat.

After that I found the railway station and booked myself onto the Marrakesh express. It leaves at 2300 tonight and get into Marrakesh, the furthest south you can go in Morocco by train, tomorrow morning. I decided to splash out and get a first class sleeper as it was only about 25 Euros (a second class sleeper is just about 17 Euros) - not bad for such a long journey!

Although the official language is Arabic, many people here understand French. Unfortunately, although I spent four years doing French at school, mine remains appalling. For example, I asked a policeman for directions today and he asked me if I spoke French. "Petit pois," I replied, meaning "Peas!"

Apologies for punctuation, etc. The internet cafes here have French-Arabic keyboards, a huge culture shock in themselves!

Comments

Aaaa, Francais .....Le rope is around le propeller! :) as we established last summer you could work on your french. ...And finnish.
Rakastan sua! ;)-Pusuja

yeah, thanks for your confidence in my lingual abilities!

useful french for you:-
pave = wreck
nauffrage = sinking
voilier = yacht
caboteur = trawler
vapeur = steamer

thanks Marky...
but of limited use on a train!

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