This is where my descent into Xanadu begins and ends. I think of a damsel with a dulcimer and an old man playing the zither… accompanied by the dancer’s gyrations. The hookahs and tall jugs of blushing wine.
The moths that flutter around the cluster of lamps at twilight. Street food shops hawking grandmother’s delicacies to love and to hate. Heaps of exotic spices for the imaginative minds.
Ochre walls and fiery smooth carpets. Mosques singing lilting melodies in a strange tongue. Curious children with grimy faces. Doe-eyed women stealing clandestine glances from within a veil. Cheeky old men with rotten teeth who have been there and done that. A jinx, a charm and a piece of art.
The bustle of a marketplace mushrooming into the night as pockets jingle with the fruit of labour. Lost faces that flicker amorphously on the dim-lit alleys and byways..minarets and plump pigeons – shabby balconies and dyed scarves on a clothesline. The tanneries carrying the stench of aeons. An intricately carved knife handle and a gem setter with his garnet eyes. And the ancient mariner who fixes you with a glint in his eye… a handful of memories to live with and die for.
Morocco and its little pieces of cluttered heaven!