Monday, March 7, 2011

A walk in Fes

A walk in Fes is one that cannot be forgotten. The winding roads, donkeys (or horses, or mules, don't know what they are)  as mailman, and the smell of the tanneries everywhere. Fes can either be spelled with an "s" at the end or a "z", either works. If you heard of Fes, you probably heard of the massive medina and that it's the largest living medieval Islamic city in the world. The reason why it has a massive medina is because there are actually two Medinas and one Ville Nouvelle (remember: medina means old city and when the French became the protectorate of Morocco they made Ville Nouvelles in every city). In the medina, there are thousands of streets and most of them are dead ends and basically only a hand full have street names so getting lost in the medina is the thing to do (it's not really recommended but it happens to everyone).
That's me in front of the Medinas. Crazy big! Anyways besides it's size, Fes is really known for their leather so of course we went to the tanneries. Before I talk about the tanneries I would like to mention a neat fact. Cars are not really allowed in the medina (unless they want to try to fit) because the streets get to narrow at certain parts that they will get stuck, so the mailman is actually a donkey! Here's a picture:

You need to watch out because some of the donkeys have attitudes. They will whip their tails and walk all over you if they have the chance. We actually got into a "traffic" jam in one of the streets because one of the packages off a donkey fell and that caused the next mailman to stop which freaked out the first one, needless to say, that was the weirdest "traffic" jam I've been in.
Alright, now about the tanneries - they smell! Welcome to leather heaven. Dead skins and dyes everywhere! Before going upstairs in a leather shop to see the tanneries, the shop owner gave us mint leaves. They smell so much better than the leather.

One thing that I do like about Morocco is that even though this is a developing country, almost everything you get is handmade. We went into a shop where you could watch pottery being made, painters painting the pottery, mosaics being chipped into tiny pieces, and actual tables being made.

The more I explore Morocco, the more I unveil it's secrets and it's magic that attracts travelers from all over the world. It's something that I can't quite put in worlds but let me say, I am falling in love with this country more and more everyday.  

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you are having an amazing time. Your blog has really got me excited about going on my own adventure to Ghana and I cant wait until the day we can sit together and chat about the places we have gone. Be safe and remember to always have a good time and enjoy every adventure!