Sidi Ifni; Morocco
02.04.2007 30 °C
For over a week now Sidi Ifni; the small spanish enclave on the edge of the Sahara Desert; has been my home. The slow pace of the small city is very noticeable and seems to cause every day to blend in with the next; with surfing, pool, eating, sunsets and the occasional wander into the markets making up the list of daily activities. The hills which surround the city enclose it and enhance the feeling of isolation that is present from the moment you first arrive in Ifni.
The wind has been offshore for two days now and a nice 2m swell has been running along the coast; causing the right handed pointbreak in front of the town creativley named 'la droit', to be working nicely. The tides here are fairly regular and the surf session for 'la droit' is at the moment lasting from about 11:30 till around 4:00 in the arvo. Yesterday at 12 the wave was working the best it had in a long time and every surfer in town was on the water; yes all six of us.
The trick to Ifni is finding what to do when theres no surf; yesterday morning it ended up being a didgeridoo jam in the streets with the local kids with Renaud taking photos and Yoan doing his best to play the stick from oz.
The hallways which lead down to the front doors of the lime walled homes provide a sweet resonating sound for the didg; causing the sound to be much louder and attracting the attention of most of the kids playing soccer in the streets.
They all wanted to try and play and would just take in turns blowing into the didg then run off laughing when the sound they made was nothing like what the expected, or like some kids it made no sound at all.
Along the beach just north of Sidi Ifni is a Spanish fisherman living in a cave overlooking the sea; always very welcoming he'll excitedly talk to you about how the waves and surf has been lately over a glass of mint tea.
The town is filled with some of the most crazy and interesting people I have ever met; like the 60 year old eldery lady who lives on the beach in Ifni and lives here when she is not at Oxford in the UK. The elegantly speaking english lady proceeded to tell me and a friend that she apologises if she is rambling because she's just been down the beach and thinks she might have smoked just a bit too much 'kif'. The arabic word for cannabis. Or like this old dude roaming through the markets;
Last night Renaud and I and these two english girls, Beth and Lindsey who were heading south to Ghana, went to the Hotel Suerta Loca for a mint tea to chill away the night. Around 11 ocklock the hotel restaraunt started to close and these three arabic musicians one on electric guitar and two on bongos started to set up their equipment, a french guy who is in Ifni with his girlfriend ran up to his room and got his guitar aswell; I headed off and grabbed my didg. We spent the next 2 hours jamming into the night to a mixture of Bob Marley, Led Zepplin and anything we could make up. The crowd of around 25 crammed into the little restaraunt kept the beat going with some costant clapping; whilst the rest of us played until the absinth tea wore off and the cous cous sunk in and all I felt like doing was sleeping.
On Wednesday Yoan is making the 20 hour drive up the coast to a town just east of Tangier to catch the ferry over to France; I'm going to head up halfway with him to the coastal fishing city of Essaouria; spend a few days there and then head into Marrakesh for my flight to Marseille in the south of France. It's been a sweet experience in Morocco; from the surf to the people and not to mention the sweet African sunsets.
Garrett in Sidi Ifni; Morocco