Thursday, August 8, 2013

Morocco: Day 2 into the desert

Continuation... On our second big day in the African continent, we packed up for a long ride into the desert. Connie had found these overnight desert trips with camel rides and signed us up. The ride to the desert took 8 hours by car. We joined 3 fellow Venezuelan travelers (Connie booked a Spanish speaking camel tour) in our SUV and our local tour guide took off blasting what I can only assume was authentic Moroccan music. We saw some beautiful scenery and towns along the way, but only one story is really worth telling and that is about the car's music selection. After hours of the Moroccan music (which to me sounded very hypnotic and had the affect of putting me right to sleep, luckily not the driver), we took an interesting turn and then the greatest hits of Madonna and Cyndi Lauper came on. While we were dancing in the backseat to "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" and "Like a Virgin", I thought, wow these young Moroccans are really interesting. Our guide had mentioned before about his Muslim faith and the traditional lifestyle of the desert peoples, the Beriberi. My American friend Melissa and I couldn't stop laughing about his taste in music as one after another 80s hit came on. It wasn't until our Venezuelan friends took the ipod to pick something else that we realized the music belonged to them and not the driver. Ohhhhh. Ok. Once we got to the desert, we found our raggedy camels waiting to be loaded down. The guys strapped our bags on their back and we climbed on, only to nearly fall off when they stood up. Those camels sure stand up fast! Joining with another tour, we rode the camels some way into the desert. Our campsite was a grouping of tents with small beds inside and a large eating pavilion  Other Spanish-speaking tourists arrived at the campsite. We had another meal of Moroccan food and were entertained by dancing from the guides around a firepit. We snuggled into our iron-stiff beds for a long night of loud desert winds blowing sand across our tent. The winds were so intense, when Connie went to the restroom, I was genuinely scared she would be blown out into the desert somewhere. While howling camels kept Connie and Melissa awake, I slept just fine.

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