Rocco 25: watchfulness

I went to Morocco for my birthday with 8 other fabulous melanin women to celebrate my over the top 25th year of life. I recognised things as they happened and hadn’t read about before so I thought I’d be the one to tell you.

Things to watch out for:

Your bags in busy areas, souks and Medinas. We stayed near the new one but went into the old one and boy it was busy yet felt authentic to the pictures you see online. Which means we immediately turned our bags around to be on our front half.

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Don’t go in Ramadan. We did. I didn’t realise when booking until later on, but my birthday is my birth day so hey ho. But I must say in that period you learn patience from them as you can imagine they’re still continuing their typical work life as they are fasting in 35-40°c.

The idea of driving and crossing roads. Be very watchful how you cross and be prepared for huge roundabout, no lane distinctions, dogs on motorbikes and people turning so close to you they could touch you.

You can be seen as disrespectful for not buying something from a shop. This happened when I commented on a man’s nice tea pots which meant he invited me in to touch them. I looked at one then handed it back and left. He then asked what do I like and I said I don’t like tea. Which somehow turned into more and he kind of dragged me back to discuss. But I hate men touching me anyway so I immediately made my stance clear and kept it pushing.

At every stage of your trips, especially if it’s a different guide find out their rate. Don’t get caught like we did. Ensure your party knows the rates and are comfortable to pay at each new handover.

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Some markets, I can’t remember where thankfully are difficult to be in as women. I read about it before but to experience it first hand was hard. We had men coming up to us trying to watch their pet monkey or dancing snakes, as we went through to the food section 😥 they called us every beautiful name under the sun (mama Africa, Serena Williams, Nicki Minaj, beautiful, princess, etc). When we said “no thank you” and kept being respectful to whatever they were selling, we got every bad name under the sun. A man did it to me first and called me an “ugly bitch”, I stopped and looked at him to repeat myself and the look of disgust I received from this man that was fasting 😮 I just kept it pushing because I didn’t know how an argument could go in this country. I love my life and as much as I take no shit, going to jail in a foreign country that I don’t speak the language at all is bullshit I don’t need.

Just because a kind man says to follow him, don’t do it. We ended up walking 20 odd minutes to some semi nice restaurant. It was expensive and as we left he was on the door waiting for his commission from the manager yet he told us he was dropping us off to go home to break fast? No way bro.
On the flip side some people and shopkeepers are very helpful. There was a guy in the mall that told us about oils and spices then some Medina info, likewise a herbalist in the Jewish quarter schooled us on natural oils, seasoning and remedies which was great!

Important tip:

Barter down excursion prices for your group and look at other companies as you walk around. There’s a guy called Hassan in the Jewish market. Hard to describe but his details are below. We paid 400 each for an all day trip essaouira and a few hours of quads, as a group of 8 people.

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Espiritaventuremarrakech.com

Espiritaventure@gmail.com

BD Mouahidine n16 kissariate sanabile marrakech- Medina Morocco

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