She placed the huge, oven-hot ceramic dish on the table in front of us, and…
We walked along the beach towards the walled medina of Essaouira, We passed camels on the way and it reminded me I’m in Africa……! The sunset this evening was just breathtaking. To be honest, the first few days adjusting to living van life and to traveling in Morocco in general, have been difficult! A sunset like this helped me realize it will soon all settle into place. We arrived to the medina, and began looking for a place to eat. We walked by a place with a big, busy patio. All the chairs were facing the street, as if it were a stage playing an unmissable show. Here, the show was a pair of musicians, busking across the path, and the people stopping to watch. This patio really did have the ultimate people watching set up. We took a seat and ordered our meal. I had a tagine with Kefta and an egg. Kefta is ground lamb and spices. It was served with bread, so I just made it into a really decadent sandwich. The music was great! The people watching was superb. We sat after dinner for a while, enjoying our tea and coffee, and the beautiful evening. Also, we have no idea what to do this evening. Gah! It’s New Year’s Eve!
We ended up at a party on a rooftop terrace. It was right on the main street, above the restaurant we ate dinner at. It cost 150dh to enter ($20 CAD), but then we could trade your tickets in for alcoholic drinks (a rarity in Morocco)! We walked up the steps to the terrace and man, this place was cool! There were stairs everywhere leading to a second level, and a kind of courtyard dance floor in the middle. There was a stage set up and on it were musicians playing music, and traditional Moroccan dancers dancing along. It was so fun! We bought a bottle of wine and went upstairs where we could enjoy the show and our drinks.
There were lots of tourists at this party. And lots of locals too. It was a fun mixed bag. We danced a bit, drank our wine, and enjoyed the show. A man came over, obviously a paid party promoter or something, took my wine glass out of my hand and handed it to Michael. He then dragged me onto the dance floor and made me dance with the other poor tourists. I laughed, of course, Michael took pictures, of course, and when the song changed, I left the stage to return to Michael and my wine. We laughed about it. Then the man came back and tried to drag me up again. I resisted. He told us to live in the moment, that this is the last moment of 2017, so we must enjoy it. This moment will never happen again, so enjoy this moment, have fun together. I smiled and told him, “we are, we were, leave us be!” He smiled and moved on to another group of tourists. How do you expect me to live in the moment if you keep telling me to live in the moment?! We chatted with some guys standing nearby as a new performer took the stage. The guys were from Switzerland and come to Morocco every year on a surf trip. They gave Michael some tips, where the best breaks are, how to get there, and which beaches to avoid. It was great!
The new performer was a woman whose look screamed, “DIVA!” Her hair was huge and curly, her dress was short and hugged her body, and she talked to us like we were her biggest fans. Dang, that diva could sing too. We danced a bit, and drank our last drink. A man went up on stage between songs and whispered to the diva. She looked at the time and nodded. I looked at my phone and realized it was only one minute to midnight! Gah!
All of a sudden, she began counting, “ONE…” Wait, what? I looked at Michael. He looked as puzzled as me. We looked at the Swiss guys, they too looked confused. In fact, I looked at the faces of all the nearby tourists and they all looked just baffled. “TWO!…. THREE!… FOUR!!!… HAPPY NEW YEARS!” What?! In Canada, we count down to New Years…? I looked at my phone, sure enough, it was midnight! 2018!!! We laughed. I grabbed Michael Quick, world adventurer and van lifer extraordinaire, and gave him a big, romantic, New Years kiss. I love this man. I love this life. Happy New Year, world!