Friday, December 17, 2010

Day 3 - Rabat

I am off to eat dinner, but first a quick lesson in how to embarrass yourself in Morocco:

So apparantly Fridays are not the day to travel as a tourist. It's like a Sunday in small-town Alabama. Everyone's off praying and resting and nothing's open. I figured this out after I took the train across town, got lost like ten times, and sweated my face off. I walked past mosque where all the men were gathering to pray. I didn't want to be disrepectful and walk by when they were all praying so I dipped into a park next to the mosque. As I said in the previous post, women are not allowed to pray where the men pray, so it would probably be forbidden for a little white girl to jump in the middle.

So here I am wandering around this park as the loudspeakers are chanting and praying, and I find that the entire park is fenced in. I am hot, thirsty, hungry, and cannot find a way out. It's like Escher's stairs where every pathway leads to a wall. I finally manage to find an exit and bee-line for it before it somehow disappears. I head out feeling a sense of accomplishment, turn right, and notice that I am standing directly in front of all the kneeling men facing Mecca. Hundreds of men, all praying to Allah, now staring at me.

Moment of panic - turn around and get lost in the labyrinth of the park, or continue to the end of the block?

I decided to continue so I put my head down telling myself, 'just to the end of the block, you're almost there.' I finally got there and quickly took another right down the block only to find another hundred men who had gathered in the street, now staring at me. Are you kidding me? While I had been in the park hundreds more had gathered to pray and flooded out into the street and sidewalks. I had no other choice but to climb over these Allah-loving men and throw my pride behind me. Let it be known that everyone in Rabat wears very dark, black clothing, but I had chosen to wear my neon green tank top, bright yellow scarf, with a bright orange purse. Oh yeah, I blended right in. I was a narwal going up the down escalator.

Tomorrow - new city, more ways to embarrass myself.

1 comment:

  1. I CAN'T WAIT TO GET LOST 10 TIMES, EMBARRASSED, & SWEAT MY FACE OFF WITH YOU!!!!!!! this made me laugh out loud. "these Allah-loving men"! thanks for taking one for the team, now i know what not to do.