Thursday, July 06, 2006

Adventures in Tangier




I was shopping one afternoon in the Medina in the Moroccan city of Tangier. The souq (market) is a labyrinth of narrow streets and alleyways, cobblestone, often with a roof over the top, flanked by myriad shops selling anything and everything: leather goods, clothing (Moroccan, French and more), shoes, food, furniture, brass goods, you name it.

I had been to the souq on several occasions, but always with friends. This time, I was there on my own. I think I'd gone to find a birthday present for a friend.

I stopped to look at something at one of the shops, and the proprietor, a Moroccan fellow wearing a brown jalaba, grabbed me by the arm and started trying to sell me to another fellow there. They were arguing in Moroccan Arabic about how many Dirham I was worth.

Of course, as a teenager, nothing much fazed me. I punched the guy in the arm, and just the sheer surprise of it all caused him to let me go. I ran off, and that was that.

One of these days, I'm going to go back to Morocco, and I'm going to make a special stop at the Medina in Tangier. I'm looking forward to it.

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