Daily Archives: February 21, 2019

Tangier: walk along the beach

Thursday afternoon.  After a nap.

[And as I write at about 8.30 p.m., I’m in my hotel room, with the telly showing some football.  And the last call to prayer of the day interrupts the broadcast.  “Allah akhbar” streams into my room, urgently calling the faithful to worship the one true god.]

Pensive on the beach.

Women do not stroll alone, except for the occasional tourist who is obvious by hair, make-up, clothing, and gait.  (So am I, by the way, except for the haircut part.)  Women stroll in groups of two or more, but mainly two.  Likewise, men are generally in groups of two or more, but mostly two. So seeing this young man seated by himself, solo, was an unusual experience.

My guide tells me that only tourists eat alone, that no one in Morocco eats alone in public.  Meals are communal, and powerfully so.  I’ve witnessed the same.

Negotiating.
This would be me. Just staring at the water.
A small muscle beach found these two practicing what appeared to be capoeira.
The ferry from Spain is arriving.

What’s wrong with these palm trees?  Perfection?  They are cellular towers!

 

 

Tangier: the bakery

In the old walled city (the medina), every small neighborhood has its own community oven.

After watching Rick Steves take a tour of Tangier, I asked my guide to be certain to show me the bakery as well.

While I was there, a half dozen men and one woman came into leave items to be baked, or to collect goods that had been baked:

  • bread, of course
  • cookies
  • roasted almonds and peanuts
  • a cake
  • a fish dish (the photo of which was too blurry)
  • biscuits (AKA cookies)

The old baker-man has all his tools right there beside him: the wooden paddle with the extra-long handle, used to move bread directly onto the oven’s brick floor; salt water, to douse the nuts after they’ve been roasted; a spike to pierce the bread so it rises correctly; trays for roasting nuts.

Payment is in coin; he tosses them into a little drawer to his right.

High above him, on the opposite wall, is a single window.  And he stands dep in a purpose-made dugout, a single 18” step helping him climb in or out, and with easy access to the oven’s portal.

I could have watched this all afternoon.

Tangier: random Wednesday photos

My guide, Achraf, and I had a wonderful day Wednesday!

Mimosa blossoms.
Camels waiting to be ridden.

The Atlantic on the west coast of Morocco.

No explanation needed.

Views from the ancient Phoenician necropolis.  Notice the fishing boats, and the other lighthouse at Cap Malabata.

A goat on the hillside.

Folks waiting for entrance to the consulate for a visa.  Left is Spain.  Right is France.

Pay telephones are still present everywhere.
A cultural artifact the Kasbah mosque — a painted ceiling. It’s stunningly beautiful! 

 

Tangier: Wednesday lunch

Vegetable soup, the most perfect and amazing I’ve ever tasted.
Bread.  Olives.  Harrisa.
Chicken pie, which means minced chicken and spices bound with egg and almond flour, in puff pastry, dusted with sugar and cinnamon.
Chicken and couscous, the most delicious couscous I’ve ever in my life tasted.
And a beef tagine with egg, olive oil, tomato, and spices (and sadly no photo).
Then biscuits for dessert.  Date, coconut, sesame, peanut, and almond.  Unbelievably good.

A chicken leg is buried underneath there somewhere. And these onions flavored with raisins were simply stupendous.

All for a set price of €20 per person.  I’m in foodie heaven.

At lunch today with Achraf, my Berber guide:

Look closely.  The beef tagine is between us.