Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Hammam - So Right Yet So Wrong

This is the toilet on the train from Fez to Marrakech. Anyone notice anything funny? Maybe something besides the general grunginess?? Anyone? No? Well let me enlighten you...that light at the bottom of the toilet there is the FUCKING GROUND rushing past at a million (slight exaggeration) miles an hour. Thats right my friend, whatever comes out of you goes straight onto the tracks below. Ahhh second class...so sweet.

This is a shot I took yesterday morning in Essouaria...where I still am until tomorrow morning when I jump a fancy pants bus to Casablanca (called only Casa by the locals). I love this picture because the man looks like he's faceless, which would normally just be gross but in this instance I'm going to consider it artistic.

This is the harbor. I love it on the harbor... despite the smell of fish...it has this glorious beachy smell that is warm and vacationy. I know vacationy isn't a word but this trip is all about invented terminology.

Halfway through the day yesterday I went to a Hammam for the first time. A Hammam is the public bath (separated by gender) where, it turns out, you go and get a severe scrub down and soap massage for about 80 dirham (10 dollars) by a burly half-nekkid Moroccan woman. I have to say...I felt delightful after the fact...skin soft...body relaxed...but it would seem that I have some serious personal space issues...and that burly half-nekkid Moroccan woman violated all of them. The other women in the Hammam (all local) were obviously amused by the occasional "woah" that would slip out. The Hammam is a very interesting tradition...for many of the women it would be the only time their hair sees the light of day unless they are at home.

These are my German bodyguards...Johann and Eustice/Ustice...I don't know...something I can't pronounce or spell so we'll call him German boy number 2 (I gave them the blog address so he can correct me if he finds it).

They were lifesavers. As the day wore on the men here were getting more and more aggressive (lots of "come and have tea in my CLOSED shop" stuff). One man in particular was starting to give me the heebie jeebies...I met Mohammed on the bus and he helped me find a hotel and was very nice but he found me the next day and I couldn't seem to shake him. He took the boys to the men's hammam and when I was waiting for them to return I got a lot of warnings from these other random guys saying "Mohammed, watch out for him...he take all your money", yeah, creepy. So when the boys got back we three kind of extracted ourselves from him and had dinner at nice little cafe (where we ran into ANOTHER from our Sahara trip...the guy from Madagascar), and then found the only bar in town on the rooftop of a restaurant with a band singing Bob Marley and U2 songs. We passed time drinking expensive bad beer while they tried to teach me nasty words in German.

It was a good night until I almost started an international incident by trying to show them my room (which was much nicer than theirs). Apparantly only hussies do such things. Oops.

Oh, and I'm supposed to mention that eventhough they spoon each other at night when they sleep they're totally not gay.

Time to hit the beach and avoid as many men as possible. I'll see if I can post one more time before leaving but I doubt it.

10 keep(s) me blogging:

sarah said...

Kara, why didn't you take Mohammed up on his offer? You love tea!

Anonymous said...

have fun and be safe. stick with the germans...they seem to be cool. :)

Jen said...

Well, I can't believe Amy left. Can't believe you're there alone. You are a trooper, a trooper the size of a peanut, but you have the werewithal of 1,000 stinky camels. I commend you oh tiny one. Stay safe. Dispatch nasty men with your dagger-like finger nails. And where on earth are you blogging this? Akmed's Computer and Hookah Den?

Kara said...

sarah - i've had a hellofalot of tea this trip. oh, and his teeth were rotten

macoosh - the trip would be much cheaper for you from where you are...you'd just have to fly to london first. once you're here, you can easily live off of 30 dollars a day including rooms. Oh' and the germans left today, but it's cool.

jen - it's called a Cyber Cafe...pronounced "seebairgh" and it has a fucked up keyboard. i picked you up a headscarf today for to make you look like a berber nomad type. i thought it be just what you need, yo.

Anonymous said...

NIIIIIICCCCCE. I will totally like the hookah, unless of course it sucks. BUT it will be a sucky thing from another country so who cares.

and in return, kendra and i got some really groovy halloween costumes for the party JUST FOR YOU.

i will not give away what they are but lets just say they are both ironic and mine involves me having to light a bit of shrubery outside Amy's place on fire when I get drunk enough.

put that in your shashishi and smoke it.

slaghammer said...

No vacation is complete without a picture of a nasty toilet. Your travails have not diminished your sense of what is important in life.

The Future said...

You have way to many perspectives here... I can't focus! Why do I imagine that the picture of the toilet you included may be the best of the lot you have seen? Like I say, I'll be rushing right over there...NOT!

Laura said...

Hope that hammam helped get the sand out of all those hard-to-reach places. I know you were complaining about that after your jaunt in the Sahara.

And next time creepy Mohammed comes around, just impale him with your pointy shoes. But don't use the ones you got for me cause I don't want to get blood on them.

Orhan Kahn said...

Lawl @ the bottomless toliet!

Eustice said...

hmmm... bodygard sounds good :)
glad that your safe home, we also had a nice time xing spain (and it's right, casablanca is not the bestplace to go)!
thanks again for the time in morocco,