Morocco – Hash, olives, and Allah.

Chefchaouen, Morocco. December 2016

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‘Welcome to Morocco! Where are you from? Australia? Ah I have many friends in Australia! Come! I show you hostel! Come! Now I sell you hash! Come! Now I show you my brothers shop! Come! Now I make you tea! Come! Now I show you carpet! You want to buy? How much? A special price for you my friend!’

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My first day in Morocco and already I’ve been ripped off bad. I came here to save money, not to be trapped in Africa without a coin to my name, but my white skin wont allow it. Oh money, you demon thing, you try to upset me but the olive tree outside my window and the soothing Arabain music that floats on the air just wont allow it.

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 The hash and the oranges are passed around the wooden coffee table. The travelers sit on couches on a rooftop terrace surrounded by the chalk mountains of rural Morocco.

Their eyes are red and their smiles are caring. One man sings a song and plays his guitar quietly.

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Six men sit cross legged in a timber hall, they are wearing long woolen gowns and chanting an old baritone hymn to the king Allah.

Two mothers walk down the street outside wearing black gowns with hijabs, they speak sweetly to each other.

They call out their beloved children who are giggling in the park that was made in the ruins of an ancient prison.

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Good morning Chefchouan! The brown sticky hash is being pressed into long pipes. The children laugh and yell in the schoolyard.

A man insists to his friend that Allah will heal her sore foot. The town is painted blue, which keeps the flies away in Summer.

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A man comes up to me with a violin and offers for me to play because he heard me whistling a song as he walked by.

As much as my heart wants to play, as much as my soul dreams of us sitting together and laughing at the magic of music, as soon as I touch that violin he will ask me for money.

Because he is poor and I am far richer than that.

So I pass him a few coins and play the violin badly. He smiles as he walks away but neither of us laugh over the magic of music.

Because he is poor and I am far richer than that.

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Me + the man

Sit side by side

At the café

Christaian + Muslim

European + Arab

White + Brown

And we drink

Our coffee

The same

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The eyes of the Moroccan Women are brown obsidian almonds that crumble the blue walls of David. I cannot look at them for long, for they are not mine to behold, Insha’allah.

Morocco is medicine for my Western mind. Here where the buildings bend in beautiful white plaster and there are no deadlines.

The people live more from their hearts than their head. From the pelvis of Africa sprouts passion, flavour, the cactus and the orange tree.

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Loudspeakers from four mosques play the voices of muezzin’s singing a song to Allah, it washes over the whole town like the feathers that fall off the wings of Gabriel.

Everyone slows down a little and take the edge out of their voice.

Everyone remembers that all are equal under the watchful eyes of Allah.

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A leather faced old woman wearing a red and white sombrero hobbles down the dirt road and stares into you with the strongest eyes born from the fight to live.

A young boy wearing a brown robe and  white cap walks across a pothole road and stares into you with the strongest eyes born from the fight to live.

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A mother cat and her two kittens have took refuge in a hash café last night.

It is morning now , and the patrons of the café talk loudly whilst smoking hash and drinking mint tea.

Mamma cat is meowing to her kittens to come down the front steps. Three big bearded men stand up with stern looks.

They walk over to the kittens and stand over them.

They bend down and pick them up. Mamma cat rubs up against their legs as they take her babies outside slowly and place them down in the sun.

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If you want to lay down and rest during the day, then do o without guilt, for it is the will of Allah.

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With love from,
The team at HeartCorePapyrus

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