Lost In Marrakesh
I have just spent 8 days in the Sahara Desert, 6 of them walking 150 miles in the Marathon De Sables. It was a long bus ride back over the Atlas Mountains. I am still stiff from my latest walking endurance feat but can absorb a bit more excitement.So here I am in Marrakesh in the North foothills of the mighty Atlas range. I just couldn’t return to New York so quickly without one more North African race walk.
This is a wonder city, very story book like. High, but elegant, mortar and stone walls ring what seem to be very private, very expensive, residences. Rightfully so too, Marrakesh has its share of stately mosques which dominate their city space geographies. I wobble by in awe. I try my hand walking in a few exquisitely trimmed parks. Everything is so orderly in this part of town. Then, quite suddenly, when I return to the street someone speaks to me in Arabic. “How are you friend?”, a young voice wants to know. “You walk fast”, a second person continues. Well, my Arabic is virtually non existent so my new found acquaintances try French. Finally we settle the multiple English words that these Marrakesh natives seem to know. The next two hours are spent in cafe’s which this couple insists I see. It is wonderfully exciting.
Later I walk to the bustling train station and nearly into the ancient Medina. The mood changes here, poorer but much more vibrant. I meet another family, in French they invite me to their home in another city apparently just an hour away by train. Sadly, I must decline for soon it will be work again. This time on 42nd Street, Manhattan.