Sunday, August 24, 2008

Life a la Fez

My high school French teacher would be so proud, for 5 years I was inspired by Miss Petherbridge [ if anyone knows her please give her my thanks] with a love of french language and literature and culture and I find I can chat with people if they are patient with is so exciting.

View from my hotel balcony.
the French did a lot of building Fez Centrale when they were the colonial power here and have left a legacy of all these wonderful old hotels and buildings a la 1920's.

my hotel is a bit of a faded beauty, but perfectly clean and comfortable, the staff are wonderful and it is the very centre of everything! great cafe in the park across the raod.

my job here is research and I have been working hard [ I have the blisters on my feet to prove it.]
my favourite cafe in the old Medina...I am having caligraphy lessons here next week...

amazing doorways, courtyards, mosaics, quiet spaces everywhere...
and the carved cedar doors themselves...

the rugs are scumptous!!! beware Parveen i want a dozen for our new place!!

Evenings one takes a stroll, the Avenue Hussan II is the most popular spot. It is palm tree lined with fairy lights and piped music as the sun stretches to the horizon.
It is the height of summer and it has been hot but it is a dry heat and every so often gentle breezes to lighten the burden of the heat.
Generally the street side cafes are full of men- you can still go in and have a coffee or mint tea if you are a woman, it is just you are a minority.
A friend in Fez took me to his favourite café- along Avenue Hussan II of course and I hung out with him and a few mates over mint tea for hours watching the people go by.
Arabic is their most used language [english and french thrown in for me]and it has such wonderful cadences when spoken softly in gentle converstaion- I have only heard it on the street or news reports and it can be quite guteral but in ambling conversation Moroccan Arabic with its French influences has a poetic feel.
Very relaxing and enjoyable.
now moved onto to is a faded glory and quite charming, so Paris like, it must have been rrreeeaaalll exciting in its heyday.
I was admiring this gentleman's flowers, and their lovely scent in the early morning air and look at the gift he so charmingly bestowed upon me.

an old apartment block up the road from my hotel...glorgious old places...

off to do more research, I have found the most beautiful restaurant in a garden, I will try the food for dinner tonight but am already certain it will make the perfect surprise for the farewell dinner of Moroccan no pics, I will describe dinner perhaps..I want it to be a surprise for my group!

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