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Costa Cruise 2009: Rabat, Morocco – Geek Turned Athlete

Costa Cruise 2009: Rabat, Morocco

Hey guys!  Sorry about the gap in posts!!  It is finals week, and I have one more test to take and a 5,000 word paper due on Wednesday.  Plus, some other things are going on that have to do with our wedding that I don’t want to spoil yet.  We shall see what happens with that, and I will let you know when I find out.  That is all I’m going to say!

Anyway, here is our recap for our trip to Rabat, Morocco.  A lot of these pics were taken from our tour bus on the way over there from Casablanca.  DSC04242

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DSC04281 Our tour was kinda crazy, by the way.  We paid for an English tour and ended up getting a French/English tour.  There were some French people on our bus, and the tour guide did not speak English very well.  So, he would speak about 5 minutes in French for every sentence in English.  I guess we got the abbreviated version of whatever he was saying.  Oh well.

DSC04304 The Kasbah of the Udayas: This was a little village within the city that had a mosque in it.  It was blue and white inside with beautiful doors!

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Mechouar, the mausoleum of Mohammed VDSC04328

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There was a guy singing in Arabic down there.DSC04336

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The Hassan Tower…DSC04351

The Royal Palace…DSC04356

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We had to use the bathroom on the tour, and this is what we got.  Imagine poo that has been sitting in a hole for a long time continually getting wet by people urinating (people that are dehydrated and eating asparagus) and defecating on it.  Imagine that smell.   Now, multiply that by 1000.  That is what it smelled like there.DSC04359

Umm, I couldn’t bring myself to pee in it.  I know, I know.  I didn’t really have to pee that bad, and considering there was a bucket next to a water spicket next to the “toilet” to clean yourself instead of TP was not enticing.  I guess that I was supposed to fill the bucket up, then splash myself.  I don’t mind drip drying in nature, but I just couldn’t do it here.  It was something about exposing my lady bits to that smell then washing with water that I didn’t know where it came from.  Hell No!!  I did get in there long enough to take pics. :)DSC04360

More of the palace…DSC04365

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On our way back to the cruise ship, the bus driver and tour guide made an unscheduled stop at their buddy’s shops.  We were taken into a carpet shop, and to tell you the truth, I was really uncomfortable.  It was dark, and the shop was in a very unsavory area.  There were 5 English speakers on the bus, and we were all guided into a room.  A what seemed like a very nice guy gave us a 20 minute presentation about how their rugs/blankets were made up in the mountains, and that it took 2-8 months for the mountain people to make them.  Personally, I found this a load of shit, but I kept listening and didn’t share my opinion.  He had an assistant that would roll out the carpets and blankets as he talked about them.  After the presentation, he looked directly at me, and asked me which ones I liked.  I liked all of them, but we didn’t have enough money to buy any of them.  We hadn’t planned for this stop at all.  No one did.  The guy kept bugging me and Steve particularly about how much we had budgeted for carpets.  He was trying to sell us $3000 carpets.  We were very honest (and nice at this point), and told him that we hadn’t budgeted anything.  But he kept pushing and pushing and pushing.  Finally, he asked me how much I would pay for a blanket.  This was after he told me that it had taken 3 months for these mountain people to make.  I told him that I didn’t want to insult him, but I would pay 100 euro ($150) IF I had the money.  He looked insulted since the blanket was worth 320 euro (~$500), and Steve said that we were done at that point.  More talk from the guy ensued.  He did not want to give it to us for that price.  The tour guide came in at that point looking worried since we were supposed to be back on the ship an hour earlier.  We got up to leave, and the guy was like, “FINE!  100 euro, 100 euro.  You pay this man (his helper)!  He took all this time with you!!!”  I didn’t want to pay him any money at this point, and I was kinda pissed.  We ended up handing over the money because I felt bad that there so many poor people here, blah, blah, blah.  I got back in the bus with our stinky blanket, and I felt so violated.  I was also mad at myself because if I would have said 50 euro, he would have taken that, but I said that I would pay 100 euro.  I’m such a bad bargainer.  I hate it!!  Anyway, now we have something from Morocco in our living room.  The blanket smells a lot better now that it has been washed, and it is beautiful.  Not $150 beautiful, but I can’t go back now!

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Here are some pics of Moroccan money, the Moroccan Dirham.  I guess that is the prince?DSC04389

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Well, to say the least, we were very glad to be back on the boat that night after a very “enlightening” day in Morocco.  Up next:  Arrecife of the Canary Islands!!

Missed other parts of the cruise?

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Marisa December 14, 2009, 10:09 pm

    oh my god girl! I would have gotten up and left the guy with his blanket after all his BS! Steve should have karate chopped him 😉 But now you have something from Morocco – not everyone does. Love the pics! Good luck on the finals – the one thing I don’t miss about school.

    Reply
    • Nicole December 15, 2009, 7:28 am

      Haha. LMFAO about Steve! yeah, I know! He was quiet and expecting me to do the dirty work, and I was thinking the same thing about him!

      Reply
  • B.o.B. December 15, 2009, 1:17 am

    Wow! Those are awesome photos. Except, the first one freaks me out a wee tiny bit. LOL! Glad you had a great trip.

    Reply
  • Charisa December 15, 2009, 1:47 am

    Beautiful pictures!! Thanks for sharing :)

    Reply
  • Michelle@Eatingjourney December 15, 2009, 1:49 am

    I totally know what you mean about the whole pressure situations of those factories. It’s so annoying. It looks like you had a good time otherwise. Seeing your pictures makes me so jealous now..i need/want to travel.

    Reply
  • holly December 15, 2009, 6:04 pm

    this happens in thailand all the time…the tour buses have agreements with these shop owners that they will bring people in there, and in turn receive money back for purchases and whatnot. they are usually pretty harmless (although they seem scary) – you just gotta grab your balls and say no. firmly. i got brought to many of these in my time there. its easy to feel bad because there is poverty…but i got screwed enough time to know that that also isn’t right!

    Reply
    • Nicole December 15, 2009, 6:08 pm

      I will know for next time for sure! Yeah, I know that isn’t right!! I’m such a sucker, but NEVER again!!

      Reply
  • holly December 15, 2009, 6:06 pm

    p.s. rabat looks BEAUTIFUL!

    Reply
  • lucy December 16, 2009, 3:24 am

    dear nicole and steve,
    when I saw the hole in the floor, it reminded me of the first one I saw in Greece. I felt violated for having to use it, but I love beer and we had had quite a few. Morraco looks alot like Turkey. Thanks for the pics. It’s amazing how much we are blessed in the U.S.
    love grandma lucy

    Reply

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