*note- yes this is from my trip in 2014. I’ve been neglecting this for too long.*
On day two, Ashley was definitely more comfortable with Marrakech, the catcalling and the medina. She had memorized the way back to our riad, so there was no need to call for help. We had the most delicious breakfast at our riad and then headed out to do some bargaining, shopping, get massages and see Jamaa el Fna at night.
Remember, it was August and if was effing hot!
We went back and arranged to have massages in our room. Which led to this question – Just how comfortable are you with your body? I know that you can go to a hammam and get scrubbed down. Unfortunately, we didn’t do that while we were there; however, we definitely needed it after going to the desert.
Now put yourself in our western American shoes. I’ve had a ton of massages and they always fold the towel over all your private parts. I’m not a prude and neither is Ashley, but we were in for a surprise. They lady came to our room and Ashley went first. I waited in the common room and when she was finished, she said it was good. I didn’t know that she had never had a massage before this time.
Just How Comfortable Are You With Your Body?
I was up next. I got naked and laid down on the table face first. She covered me with a sheet worked on my upper body. So far, so good. when she was finished, she covered up my back and then lifted the whole sheet up on my bottom half. Like everything exposed! There was no tucking it around my butt and legs. Nope! I was just hanging out everywhere! Ok. This isn’t what I expected, but I can handle this. As she worked on my upper legs, she didn’t leave any crevice untouched.
She was massaging my butt!
Not in a sexual way, just getting all my body parts. It was time to flip over and here’s where it got even stranger for me. She massaged my boobs! Once again, not in a sexual way. When it was over, I asked Ashley if she did this to her too. She said yes and because she had never had a massage before, she thought was just how it was done. Later, I learned that was totally normal and we, as Americans, are way too prudish for the rest of the world!
We had another amazing meal at our riad and then headed out to shop some more and see Jamaa el Fna come alive at night.
Remember when I met Jim in Las Palmas? You know the guy half way across the world who knew my tiny hometown. Funny story. We were in the square and Ashley wanted to get her picture the snakes. Super touristy, I know. I wanted nowhere near them, even if they couldn’t bite me. We started chatting up the snake handlers and they asked where we were from. When Orlando came up, his face lit up. He then explained that he worked at the Morocco Pavilion in Epcot for two years. He then talked about how much he loved to go over to the east coast to go fishing. I asked him where and he tells me, “Sebastian Inlet.” Get the eff out! That’s my hometown again! Another country, another person I meet who knows my hometown. Don’t worry, this becomes a reoccurring theme for everywhere that I travel.
Jamaa el Fna at night
When I said that the old walled city of Marrakech was intoxicating, it became even more so seeing Jamaa el Fna come alive at night. We watched as the people set up their stalls and what was earlier a sea of people moving through the square, had now become a site for food stalls, tables, wafts of smoke and steam and vendors peddling their goods to anyone who would listen. It was definitely one of those “must see” things at least once in your life. Words can’t do it justice.
We wrapped up our second day with cocktails at the only place serving alcohol inside the walls of the medina, street food and making new friends. We didn’t stay out late because we had to get up early in the morning to start our 3-day trek to the Sahara Desert. Little did we know that the next day would be the calm before the storm…