I have never thought when I first applied for being a mentor that I’d be the one who would have the chance to visit Morocco. One might think that being originally from Cadiz, at the very south of Spain, I had visited this country many times. But for some reasons, I’d never made it to Morocco, until we headed there with the UNE Seville students.
On the way to Morocco we were all tired, since we had to get up at the crack of dawn that morning, but the excitement of arriving in Tangier made the bus ride a pleasant one (the guys were looking forward to be reunited with their UNE Tangier friends, who had been visiting Seville the week before).
When we first disembarked at harbor of Tangier, we were warmly welcomed by Abdeslam, our guide for our stay in Morocco. He first took us to lunch in DARNA, the Women’s Association in Tangier, where we started a Moroccan dining experience that would last three days! After the meal they told us about the goals and aims of this association. Then we met the UNE students from Tangier to play Scavenger Hunt, as a way to discover the city. I have to confess that this wasn’t my favorite city during the trip, but there were some spots that left me enchanted. We spent the last hours of the day in the UNE Campus in Tangier, where we enjoyed a great dinner and shared long talks. Some decided to go out and enjoy the Moroccan night, while others went to bed to get some rest for the following days.
The second day of our trip started with some bad news: not only it was time to say goodbye to our UNE Tangier friends, but also our coordinator Ruben had to go back to Spain because of personal reasons. Fortunately, we still had the support and company of our guides Abdeslam and Lynn, the founder of ESA, who we got the pleasure to share this experience with. It was a long day, full of adventures: a camel ride in Cape Spartel; a stop in the only point of the world where the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea meet; followed by a short stay in Tétouan, where we enjoyed some couscous for lunch and visited its souk (bazaar); and ultimately a stop at a viewpoint on our way to Chefchaouen. However, the best part is yet to come.
We were warmly welcomed once again by Akram (whom we have had met during lunch in DARNA), our coordinator in Morocco and also my host brother in Chefchaouen. We were served some delicious Moroccan tea and yummy pastries by Asid, Akram’s mom, a wonderful woman that made us all feel like at home. Then we met the other Moroccan host students and all went to visit Chefchaouen’s city center and its citadel.
On our third day in Morocco, Abdeslam took us to the most beautiful spot I’ve been to in years. We went through the beautiful blue and white streets of Chefchaouen and even had to hike a little until we got to the top of a hill, where we got to see even better the beauty, which this little city has to offer. Afterwards we had some Moroccan tea, visited a weaving workshop and enjoyed another yummy Moroccan meal at Akram’s aunt’s house, where all the girls attended a henna session while being delighted in an Ansalusi music performance. The evening was all about going shopping and buying souvenirs, which would make us remember those wonderful days in Morocco. When we went back to our homestays, we were once more surprised by the dinner Asid had prepared for Nikitta, Leah, Akram and me. The day came to an end with a photo session where we put on typical Moroccan dresses and a visit to another wonderful spot in the city, where Akram and his friends took us to admire a sky full of stars.
As the time went by, I got more and more impressed by Morocco and kind of fell in love with this country.