A Travellerspoint blog

Didg Jam in the Foreign Land;

Sidi Ifni; Morocco

sunny 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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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;

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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.

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Garrett in Sidi Ifni; Morocco

Posted by clancy_of_ 04:15 Archived in Morocco Tagged round_the_world Comments (1)

New experiences;

Every moment of every day;

sunny 22 °C

The surf has been onshore for two days now but the swell is lifting and it is swinging offshore tommorow morning; this morning Renaud and I went and had breakfast with these two hot french / arabic girls he knew. All was good until we left the cafe and I felt really uncomfortable as every man in the street from age 20 to 35 was just staring at us. After we walked home and got inside Renaud and Yoan starting laying down a few of the Moroccan laws to me;
One; Have sex with a girl outside of marriage and expect a good five years in a Morrocan jail. The fact that there were more laws to come didn't really concern me as that initial law meant that I think I will spend my last week and a half in Morocco just surfing playing cards and pool.

Whilst this law is true; it is only of concern when you are with local women and especially in smaller towns in the south of the country such as Sidi Ifni. In tourist spots such as Agadir, Marrakesh and the north coast the law is almost disregarded.

Im living pretty well in Sidi Ifni at the moment; I'm spending about $8 (AUS) a night on accomodation and I have a shower, dvd player, kitchen the works. Go out to dinner every night for $3.50 and get half a chicken, chips, salad, bread, mint tea, vegies and dips. And then during the day just make avocado, tomato and olive sandwhiches for about 90 cents each; and get a glass bottle of coke for 50 cents.

Ohwell it's lunch time so I'm going to head off and get a cous cous and get ready for an arvo match of poker; sorry about the lack of photos but I'm recharging the batteries.

Garrett; Sidi Ifni; Morocco.

Posted by clancy_of_ 03:27 Archived in Morocco Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

Lone Surfers;

Sidi Ifni; Morocco

semi-overcast 25 °C

As you enter the walls of Sidi Ifni, with one edge of the town nestled in the mountains and the other opening out onto the sea; you really feel as though you are entering another world.
With swell is building and the wind slightly crosshore; there is never more than three people in the water and a lot of the time you can be alone. With deserted beaches stretching out in front of you and surf all around it really it feels like a lost paradise.

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The town has it's characters, and none more so than the local surfer Ahmed. As passionate for surfing as the pope is for religion he spends every day on the water; this thirty year old Morrocan started surfing at the age of 18 and is at home in the waves.
The two french travellers;
Renaud; the photographer.
and
Yoan; the lost surfer.
Provide hours of entertainment from our intense games of pool to the hours spent surfing, or the casual sharing of a Tangine au Poisson.

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This morning Renaud and I hit up the beach; for an early morning session. With the swell picking but the winds slightly onshore it wasn't perfect, but with the whole beach to yourself it makes it all worthwhile. I had some fun waves and Renaud did his best to captre the moment.

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The town feels as though everything was built from scratch in the 1950's and nothing has been altered since; with it's decaying Spanish art deco lining the walls of every house it really is a place that must be seen to be believed.

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Garrett in Sidi Ifni; Morocco

Posted by clancy_of_ 08:25 Archived in Morocco Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

Inch-hala;

Surf Adventures; Morocco

sunny 33 °C

The next three days were spent, lazing, eating, playing cars, drinking, tanning and jumping off the rocks in front of the house whenever we wanted a quick surf at Hash Point.

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The chilled out surf town of Taghazout was an amzing place where we met ravelling surfers from Germany, Austria, South Africa, America, Australia, New Zealand, Morocco, England, Spain and even Sweden.

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The Sunset's from our balcony rivalled those at home, and the black shadows of the palm trees at Anchor Point made them just that little bit better.

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Last night the 5 of us went our seperate wayswith the Americans heading back to Paris and Catherine and I getting a lift down to Agadir with a Californian guy Cliff; named 'Californiacation' by the local kids. We all exchanged emails and phone numbers and vowed to meet for a reunion in Australia in 5 years time. Our awesome little crew was just one example of the amawing people you meet when your travelling. (The pic was taken by Catherine)

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Anyway for the past 4 hours I have been sitting in a cafe at a bus station in Imezgane just south of Agadir; waiting for my 4 oclock bus to Sidi Ifni; where hopefully the surf will be bigger. As the local surfers say if there asked about the possibility of a bigger swell tommorow;
Incha-Hala; God Willing.

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Garrett in Sidi Ifni; Morocco.

Posted by clancy_of_ 09:08 Archived in Morocco Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

Headin to Tarhazoute;

29 °C

This morning we awoke to the sounds of a catfight on the terrace; as annoying as it was it served as the perfect alarm clock. We hit up a small restaraunt packed with locals for some croissant and pain aux chocolat. On the way to the bus stop our taxi driver pointed out to us the local mosque, whilst carefully navigating the lawless Morrocan roads which could be considered interesting at the best of times.

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Before leaving; we decided to check out the souqs one more time and I managed to score myself some Morrocan sandals; sweet.

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On arrival at the bus stop the haggling began; "take my bus 100 Dh; tale my bus 90 Dh; speaking french allows you to avoid being totally ripped off and Catherine and I managed to get two tickets to Agadir central for 80 Dh; $11 each. The 4 hour bus journey through dessert and snow gave us a small taste of the many colours of Morrocco.

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On the trip we met three american guys; Mark, Simon and Will; they were studying in Paris and had just spent several days hiking in the high atlas and were heading to Agadir to relax and unwind. We chatted for a while and they decided heading up the coast to the fishing village of Taghazout to chill and surf, sounded like a sweeter option.

Catherine, Mark, Simon, Will, Joseph, Me and the taxi driver crammed ourselves into a taxi and with some sweet arabic tunes blazing we headed the 20 minutes up the coast to Taghazout. The thing in Simon's hand is the one handle that was used to open all windows; named 'the tool'.

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On arrival we were met by Adil; a guy who said he would find us a sweet apartment. After the standards of Marrakesh's hotels we weren't optimistic as to what we were to expect, but after walking across town and up some steps, we were taken to one of the most amazing views I had ever seen; from Agadir to Anchor point, with marble floors, a balcony; roof terrace, shower, toilet, 5 beds, kitchen, fridge, T.V. and huge 8 seater couch; it was all ours (after a bit of haggling) for $14 (AUS) each a night.

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We quickly unpacked; and whilst the americans headed into Agadir to get some beer and Catherine went into town I ran up to Anchor's and surfed sweet 6ft anchors with just 8 other guys, for the last 2 hours before dark.

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We all headed into town afterwards for some tangine's and cous cous at the sweet local restaraunt, "Le Paix".

Garrett in Taghazout; Morocco.

Posted by clancy_of_ 05:06 Archived in Morocco Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

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