Wednesday, 10 October 2012


We got lost in the medina (old city) this morning trying to find a museum. But in Morocco people are always willing to help you find your way … problem is there is usually a fee involved. Today we were assured that all that was required was to say thank you in Arabic. Easy.

True to his word, our guide left us back where we wanted to be in the spice market. What we weren’t so sure about was whether the proprietor of shop at which he left us was a stranger or yet another person in the network of friends who scratch each others back.

Either way, I was keen to get the low down on the spices so we played the game and got a full run down of the strange and wonderful substances in sacks and bottles. Along the way we were served Imazighen (berber) tea, and told for the umpteenth time since we arrived in Morocco that this little shop was our second home.

The strength and aroma was fantastic. One jar contained menthol … our host warned us to be careful when sniffing, and indeed, it was overpowering. He added just a few grains to our tea and it was transformed into a medicinal liquid that aired out the sinuses.

Unlike the souks, in this wholesale market the prices were fixed, so no bargaining here. Probably means we got ripped off, but I’m chuffed with the bag of goodies that I’ll try to squeeze through customs when we get home.