18 Jun Morocco | Dar Bensouda
Here’s the thing..I told Will we would be taking Ryan Air to Morocco as that’s the only airline to offer direct flight from London to Fez. He’s not sure what to expect, I just gave him heads up that’s a budget airline and yes I emphasize this again and again for keeping his expectation low enough.
When we managed to land in Fez airport, buckled off the seat belt, lined up and almost be ready to get off the plane, there’s one passenger at the back kept pushing through all others and yelling “my children and wife are waiting for me and I need to get off from the plane first.”
Holy moly that’s my very first time to experience something like that. Obviously when he’s half way jamming through the traffic, one English man stopped him. And you probably know what’s gonna happened, they got into fight verbally and later physically….
Really? That’s my first impression of Morocco and I wasn’t sure what to expect next….
We got through the tremendously slow custom and first thing we were supposed to get some local currency. Two booths kept waving at us and I couldn’t help but start judging if these currency exchange places were sketchy. They both told us they had the best rate and made me even more confused. I was only 10mins in Morocco and my blood pressure was high.
Our Riad had arranged a driver to come pick us up and when our driver brought us to his 30 years old, not aged gracefully kind of vehicle, Will asked me to turn on my GPS and make sure if he would bring us to Medina. Our driver was actually pretty nice and welcoming but we acted very nervous. It’s pitch dark outside and the only thing we saw are bunch of half built and old run down buildings. Will told me later on he thought we went to war zone and that’s why he insisted I had to turn on my GPS for safety purpose.
I probably watched too much “Scam City”…
Our driver dropped us off at outskirt of the old Medina and another butler came to take our luggages and guide us to the Riad. We followed him through the dark narrow pathway, I could feel my palms were sweating. So dark, so quiet and it’s an endless maze. Street kids were staring at us like aliens and I felt very unsafe at that moment. I just kept my head down and watched my steps very carefully, followed our butler and street cats (meow…) and thank god we finally arrived … at the door of Dar Bensouda.
Once we walked through the entrance and voila this huge gorgeous courtyard was brought to my eyes. Fresh pot of mint tea and cookies were served while we were waiting for check in.
A completely different world from what I had just experienced minutes ago.
Concierge lady asked if we would like to stay at the Riad for dinner and I answered yes immediately with zero hesitation. I didn’t want to leave our Riad at all. I wasn’t sure if our chicken tagine was delicious but after a long day of travel and frustration, we were more than happy to stay calm and make myself comfortable at the Riad.
Dar Bensouda is restored beautifully and tastefully . The room rate was also very reasonable. Our room was split into 2 storeys with a living room upstairs. The bed was also very comfortable. We got a little private courtyard and we spent a lot of time there just to catch up with emails and readings. Photo can do the justice and I can guarantee they looked exactly the same as they were in person.
I was very tired but after several hours of sleep, I woke up at 5am by the call to prayers (adhan) and asked myself “where am I?” You know that first experience of hearing the call to prayers was rather creepy than fascinating. It lasted for almost 20mins and I couldn’t fall back to sleep.
“It’s okay.” I talked to myself. Let’s get freshen up and go grab some breakfast. I have read the rave reviews on Tripadvisor about how good the breakfast they served.
Our first traditional Moroccan breakfast – breads with variety of condiments, some fresh oranges, coffee and juice. The oranges and fresh squeezed orange juice were very sweet and juicy, just the overall breakfast selection was very simple and much simpler than my expectation.
I started questioning myself. I sent Will the most gorgeous pictures of Morocco from Pinterest and prepared him ready for a once in life time kind of travel. Did I set a different standard? Would this journey be able to deliver?
#跟著矛盾去旅行 第二篇－ 《摩洛哥 Fez 不似預期》