June 17, 2011

Funky Fez & Aladdin | Morocco

Fez is an Imperial City in the North of Morocco and The Lonely Planet has described it as “an old and supremely self-confident city that has nothing to prove to anyone…Fez is the spiritual and cultural centre of the county and the pulse of life here Morocco’s symbolic heartbeat.

Our hostel was tucked away on the outskirts of the ancient medina in Fez - the ‘Funky Fez’ is a converted riad with a cool inner courtyard and a tiered rooftop terrace. Opened only 2 months ago, everything is new and fresh and the staff are friendly and eager to please.

Immediately after being shown our “Asia” themed room, we were greeted by a kitten who Christina aptly named Aladdin - he owned the place and managed to find his way on my lap constantly.

All of the hostel guests sat down for a meal on the terrace; tagine chicken, salad and potato with beetroot - delicious! Every meal is complimented with green tea and crusty, home baked bread which you dip in various sauces. Our motley crew of diners consisted of an American, a Czech couple and Spaniards later on.

One of the greatest things about travelling is meeting people along the way. They range from those you would never associate with at home(or even find, no matter how hard you tried!) to creeps, weirdos,hippies, ‘gap yah’ students or your new friend for life. Everyone feels slightly more relaxed in these new environments, surrounded by others with a common interest in exploring the world, swapping horror travel stories or trying to “out” travel the other. Regardless, everyone has a story to tell.
Take Todd for example, one of the boys who we met on the terrace after dinner: He’s a small, boney Texan with long black hair and an incredible vocabulary. Well spoken and friendly, you’d assume he was on a career break or a mature student perhaps. You’d never guess that he’s actually a drug dealer who makes enough money selling weed to invest in $30,000 worth of Moroccan carpets (which he will resell in the states for 3x the price) He also did this with Sitars when he went to India. “Yea man, everyone wants their own exotic piece of the world. I’m doing what others think they’re incapable of doing -traveling and making a bomb from doing it!” 

Who’d have thought?