Agadir – Essaouira

Cats again! This time from Q…

Subject: Just SWEETIE!!!
Date: Saturday 16th October 1999

Boo!! See I got your attention, didn’t I?:) wow! Reading your words, I thought that I was reading an adventurous novel…it are full of bizaar characters, moments of anguish, moments of excitement, moments of “wow” – it is likely to exist in a fiction…but no! you live it.

For my part, Mali is quite normal! It is no longer an adventure, an ‘everyday live’. I am quite sad today for it is that my little kitty passed away. It’s even sadder that I mostly responsible for its death…and I cannot do much to resolve the situation.

I was in Bamako about a week ago, biking around the city to get things done, I saw a ‘white ball of cotton’ strolled and cried for its mum and home. So, the only thing right for me to take it in…so I did. The kitty was so cute – 5-7 days old, yet it knew how to drink without its mum’s bossom. However with hand-feeding, kitty was doing ok. I had to take care of the little ‘monster’ for a few weeks…well the whole week the kitty had diarhea and it couldn’t eat much…however I have to travel to the capital again and kitty had to travel with me. The ride to the capital was long and it was hot! Kitty was in a small box and when I realized that kitty had been overheated and suffocated by the heat and its sickness…I gave the kitty CPR and tried my best to rescue kitty. It got a bit better and yet was too late….

I layed kitty next to the river Niger…gave it a kiss…and said I really love it…and begged it for forgiveness! My neglect had caused kitty’s death. It was so young and lovely! I wish there is a heaven for all kitties. It is sad to know that kitty had not been given a name. Rebecca dear! Sorry to tell you such a sad story. I just need to have someone to tell to and I just know that you would understand how I feel. I didn’t know the first thing about this raving madman at this stage, apart from the brief meeting in Casablanca.. I hope Senegal shall give you a nice hospitality, so, lovely travel and I shall wait for you on this sub-desert land, Mali. I could not wait to see you again…we shall travel together if you’d that!

Peace and love

Subject: salaam al-laykoum
Date: Monday 18th October, 1999

I am yet again having a good chortle at all your funny e-mails, although the incidence of people saying how boring Melbourne is, is rather high. At least Melbournians don’t poo in the shower, as in Essaouira, but I won’t bore you with the details.

Essaouria (pronounced SSSSaweera in Arabic) is a small coastal town six hours south of Casablanca, famous for its fish and big brass cannons pointing out to sea. It is jolly nice, and I am recovering from the excesses of the mountainside, and have a wee cold, or as a local put it ‘la grippe’. We holed up in the yukky tourist town of Agadir for a while, waiting for our washing to come back from the laundry. That Moroccan feeling was curiously absent – I even saw a rich lady walking a poodle, and no other tourists responded to my cheery ‘bonjour’. The dive we were staying at turned out to be a brothel downstairs, and I didn’t get 2 seconds’ peace on the beach.

I had decided it was time for us to part ways – i was keen to get to Essaouira, and the boys wanted to go surfing just north of the town. I also didn’t think my lungs and liver would stand up to their company much longer, and was starting to be a bit of a boy myself, forgetting to take showers and so on. I also find that when I a with other people, I become a bit less self sufficient – I was speaking French and Arabic less, and had strange cravings for pizza.

So I found myself in the seedy bus station in Agadir, thinking I’d made the right decision, but also quite blue and a bit teary at being on my own again. But in about 10 minutes, I was conversing with three Canadians who were also stuck in Imlil, and a French couple, all of whom were heading to Essaouira. After one of the most rickety bus journeys in Morocco (my arse even left the seat at some stages) and smelly (teenagers smoked dope continuously in front of me) we arrived at sundown by the ramparts, and found rooms at the Hotel Beau Rivage in the central square. The hassle here is remarkably low, and I even felt a bit neglected last night, as not even one person bellowed ‘WHAT YOUR LOWEST PRICE’ at me.

I had breakfast on the terrace with the Canadians, and we had a fantastic view. To the right about 10k’s of sandy beach, a craggy island in the middle of the bay complete with disused prison, circling falcons, ramparts on either side, and to the left a busy port with old-fashioned looking boats hauling up their catch. I fluttered about the town today in a v. theatrical orange headscarf, and my belly is full of garlic, olives, bananas and sardines.

Now for business: for all you unsubtle buggers NO I HAVEN’T GOT ANY LOVIN’ YET, so stop asking! I will keep you posted! Or maybe I won’t!!! Thankyou Mum for the Bold and the Beautiful update, I am desolate at Amber’s plight, maybe she could adopt a little Chinese baby? Or even a Romanian orphan? To Cazz, I am dying to see a movie in North Africa, however the cinemas seem to be the preserve of adolescent male Moroccans, so I will wait until I have a large group about me before i venture in! X

And from Mum and the Aunty…

While you were on the Marrakech Express I was on the Geelong almost express…..I got a video last night ‘Hideous Kinky’, set in Marrakech in the 70s with Kate Winslet. It seemed to show Morocco as you would be seeing it, but I’m sure you would have more sense than Kate Winslet in the film…..However have just read your mountain adventures with the boys from Balwyn. I’m certainly glad I didn’t know about it at the time. What if it hadn’t stopped raining, or there had been more than 1 man. It doesn’t bear thinking about x

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