As I was wondering and pondering my way down the street earlier with a bag full of food and beer to celebrate another successful day bumming around the wonderful streets of Marrakech, a wonderful Moroccan man jumped up off his seat in the shade and out into the scorching hot street to show his friends what I had got in my bag, he bent and twisted around my bag pointing at each item through the thin plastic.
Of course, this is a Muslim country and so I was a little unsure as to how they would take my shopping list, especially the beer, especially during a religious holiday. However, Marrakech has the most wonderful people, like the high-vis vested man wanting to discover what the foreigner had bought, I explained ‘it’s good’, which is a ridiculous thing to say to a group of Moroccan friends at this time of year and at any time of the year really, however, this man was interested and I tried to give him an answer to satisfy his interest.
The passion and enthusiasm that he used to describe each and every article of my haul focusing on the beer was amazing to me. In this time of Ramadan, the city has chosen religion over tourists, as it should, so there is only one place to buy beer in the entire city as far as I am aware. Perhaps they were amazed I found some, but then I am British and given enough time, we can and will sniff it out.
The passionate man’s noble friends just sat back in the shade and watched the events unfolded like it was every day to them and I suppose it was. In my sleep deprived state this man’s passion for my plastic was simply amazing but to his friends, this is probably the way he goes about killing time during the day. He just wants to explore and meet people and this is the way he does that, exploring each and every part of a person’s shopping haul to see how different we are.
Then the passionate man tried to sell me hash, I declined, we shook hands and off I went with my haul, he returned to the shade and his noble friends, ready for the next adventure and their bag of shopping to turn the corner.
Just a casual shopping trip in Marrakech while I was there, I spoke to the guy in this piece pretty much every day after this but this was our first meeting, he never offered me hash again, he just wanted to pass the time during the day.