0179. Dropped off in the Middle of Nowhere (Mor 028--new)

Jemaa Oulad Abou Travel Blog

 › entry 8 of 74 › view all entries

Bir Jdid was too quick--decide to find someplace off the beaten track to round out my weekend trip.

 "Jemaa Oulad Abou" seems to fit the description--so I set out to experience Moroccan travel off the beaten track.

 It's a little different.  For one thing, the rule is 6 passengers to a rural taxi.  So  I thought it odd that we head out with only 5.   Sure enough--we round a bend and 4 more passengers pop up from behind a building--apparently, prearranged...

 So we continue on one of Morocco's famous "one lane highways" (if someone's coming the other way--it's a game of chicken to see who will pull over...)  Then we reach a fork in the road in the middle of a moonscape and the driver stops and told us to get out.

 "This is as far as I go".

 He says.   We protest to no avail.

 So this is what "off the beaten track folk" have to go through all the time...

 So we wait in the middle of an empty wilderness hoping someone going by would give us a ride. A nearby sign read "15 km to Oulad Abou". 

No, I'm not in the mood for another long hike in the blazing sun.

We don't have to wait long--and the car that stops only charges me 5 Dhs--so all's well that ends well...

Jemaa Oulad Abou is dirty yet colorful little village with a scattering of stalls around the central circle selling fruit, cow guts and miscellaneous scrap metal.  Ridiculously overloaded trucks carrying bales of straw rumble through town.

I stop for a tagine at a filthy little cafe right near the circle.  Expectations: very low.

Turns out to be one of the best tagine's I've ever had.  Dead serious.  The spices are perfect, the vegetables fresh, the meat plentiful and tender.  I tell you, don't judge a book by its cover.

So, if you ever happen to be passing through Jemaa Oulad Abou, be sure and try the tagine at the cafe at the circle with the red awning...

The town is only a few blocks square, so not a whole lot of exploring to do.  Moonscape as far as the eye can see at the edge of town.  We're only 80 kms from Casablanca, yet this really feels like the middle of nowhere...

 End of Episode 03


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Jemaa Oulad Abou
photo by: nathanphil