0277. Riding with the Jolly Ezzhiliga Market Vendors (Mor 110--new)
Ezzhiliga Travel Blog› entry 32 of 130 › view all entries
I get into Rabat late--but manage to find a room with no problem--and after a delicious dinner of cow brain, I feel fully rejuvenated. Still looked like a bit of a hobo, but a classier hobo...
Next morning, I have my work cut out for me: my mission is to go and retake the photos and video clips that I lost of Temara, Ain Aouda, and Rommani. And knowing how skittish transportation can be to and from Rommani, I'd better head out early.
Step one: take bus 56 to Temara. Unbeknownst to me, there are TWO busses 56--this one is the OTHER one and it ends up in neighborhood still under construction way out in the sticks...
Temara really has some sprawl issues.
Not much to see here, so I take my clip and head back up to the main road.
Step two: catch a van to Ain Aouda--manage that with no difficulty... take my clip there and head to the grand taxi station.
Step three: catch a grand taxi to Rommani. That takes a long time--but finally manage.
I grab a tagine in Rommani, call up my old pal Yassine. We take a couple of photos and clips and... Mission accomplished!
But it would be such a shame to not discover any place new on this fine day--and there is a town south of here... If I'm lucky, I could go down there and then catch another grand taxi to Oued Zem--and on to Casablanca... It's a gamble--transportation is really unpredictable in these parts.
Sure enough, there is a grand taxi heading to Ezzhiliga... after a bit of a wait, we're off... winding up and down steep hills and across rolling valleys... until it really starts to feel like the middle of nowhere.
Market day is winding down in Ezzhiliga when we get there--so I quickly climb up a nearby hill to soak in the view. Not much substance to the town... just an odd feeling that even though we're relatively close to the Casablanca Megapolis, people seem so cut off from the world here...
After wandering a bit, head back to the main road hoping for some sort of transport. I see the last of the market vendors cramming into a very rickety looking van--they offer me a ride to Oued Zem, so I squeeze in. Time to get to know rural, hardworking folk.
Generally, these aren't the type of folks I converse with much. They tend to be reserved, a bit humorless, and too weary after hours and hours of unrewarding toil to socialize with a foreigner. At least, that's how I normally perceive them. But these guys were different. One of them said he'd actually finished high school and studied English back in the seventies--and was determined to practice with me. There were the typical discussions on religion, etc... Then they asked me to pull out my guitar... and suddenly these rugged, rural Moroccan men became more jolly than a crowd of Irishmen at a pub on Friday night--even an old fellow who looked about eighty joined in...
I'll never forget my ride with the Ezzhiliga Market Vendors....
End of Episode 03