Thu January 03 2013  —  e-mail Manfred

Agadir, Always back to Agadir.

Flag Morocco

Wednesday, August 31 2005

1 year, 1 month, 9 days

Agadir, Morocco

About Travel Photography,
Colors of the World.

Manfred is creator of ThisFabTrek.com, travel photography, a travel blog and a photography blog (a journey from 2004 to 2013). 'I set out to see the colors of the world, always I try to capture the colors'.

Seeing, is understanding, so I report and photograph, but formost enjoy and live those different conceptions of life (all that TV [and the web] cannot give). I reject jealousy, animosity, bigotry. Be free!

Manfred in the desert of the Western Sahara

The mind, when pondering at night and always asked those questions. What am I doing in corporate wonderland of bank, university, office or church? Who is the other animal asleep deep inside, the thinker, punk, creative, or Indian, vagabond and healer, maybe artist, writer, photographer, traveler, globetrotter? Oh God, dare you to think. When I saw the lies, gambles and manipulations I follow the old dream and set out for the journey of life lived, the journey to see the colors of the world.

During years on the road I have taken the turns as they came along, and realized one thing: Only such a small part of the planet can be explored and such a vast land and sea mass will always remain unknown, to me; many swamps, jungles, deserts and oceans will never be traveled. But then I am father of twin boys, Daniel and David, my most important, and I show them some of the wonders and colors out there.

ThisFabTrek, Photography and Journey, the Stories from the Road and Life around the World, stopped in August 2013 after more than 9 years, Love and Peace.

Last vehicle.

G20, Chevy Gladiator.

Chevrolet Gladiator G20, The boys in Cordillera Blanca, Peru.
The boys and Chevy van, Peru.

The G20, the vehicle that came to me for the Americas adventures.

6 wheeled Land Rover.

Land Rover Defender 6x6
Link to Foley

The vehicle of the Africa adventures, a Foley 6-Wheeled Land Rover Defender.

Before, the MB307.

Manfred and MB307
Journey, Middle East.

The vehicle of the Middle-East and North-Cape Journeys. See all vehicles.

Daniel and David with nanny Aisha, the best we ever had, black African Woman carrying white twin babies, in Bamako, Mali.

Land Rover 33,837km

Trekking 305km

Ferry 683km

Train 150km

Other cars 4.633km

Travel Blog

contains Festival/Fiesta/Art photography.

"There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come." - Victor Hugo.

"What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it, to tell the tale." Living to Tell the Tale - Gabriel García Márquez.

"They never taught wandering in any school I attended. ... they never taught the art of writing a book, either. It's all so mysterious."
"Wandering is an art in itself. Wandering and writing don't mix"
"Writing demands commitment and if one thing your wanderer is allergic to is that very quality of commitment, for once one is committed he runs that very risk of failure ..." Wanderer - Sterling Hayden.

"Photography enables you to grasp a place first time round. ... Photography is a means of exploration, it's a vital part of travel, almost as essential as a car or a plane. " - Wim Wenders.

"The worst prejudice we acquire during our youth is the idea that life is serious. Children have the right instincts: they know that life is not serious, and treat it as a game..." , Egon Friedell.

"How far you gonna go. Before you lose your way back home" - Tryin' To Throw Your Arms Around The World, Achtung Baby, U2.

"If you want to be a hero well just follow me." - Working Class Hero, John Lennon.

"When I think of all the things I have done, I know that it's only just begun." - I love you, Lou Reed.

"One does not escape the Sahara - the Sahara let's you go or not" - Touareg.

"Planet earth is blue and there`s nothing I can do" - This is Ground Control to Major Tom, David Bowie.

"Glory for the crazy people/in this stupid world" - Ahmed Fouad Negm.

www.thisfabtrek.com > journey > africa > morocco > 20050831-agadir

Agadir, 30 Jul to 1 Aug.

Map: Journey Tan-Tan, Agadir, Rabat, Agadir.

My head still dizzy from the trip I have just finished, I cannot believe where I have been, what I have seen when I write the Tan-Tan/Laayoune page.

I think I like the on-my-own. experiences. But I am looking forward to see Hasna again. We are scheduled to meet in Marrakech.

I finish the Western Sahara/Tan-Tan story really quickly. I spend too many hours in front of the computer, often rejecting food all day only to eat some junk in the evening.

I want to finish off "my work" before meeting Hasna.

I wash the car and leave for Marrakech.

It takes me two days to get there, though it's only 250km..

Seems the heat of Agadir was a bit much.

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Marrakech, 3 Aug to 9 Aug.

5 days ill, suffering from a heat-stroke.

Marrakech is even hotter then Agadir.

Hasna, I could not reach for a day. A hotel, the Essaouira, becomes my refuge. I sleep, and sweat and sleep and sleep. The head-ache and dizziness does not go away. The phone does not ring. My own calls end in nirvana.

Friday my phone gets stolen. The dizziness makes it hard to take care of all that I am carrying. So, no-more worrying about calls I receive or make to get in touch with Hasna. At least until Monday when I finally recover my number with Moroc Telecom and buy a new phone.

Hasna still nowhere.

But I am back health wise and begin anew to enjoy Marrakech. The Hotel Essaouira is a good place to make friends.

Gail and his group. Gail reads Hesse in French. Interesting, Siddharta is a beautiful read in French too.

Stefan and Stefanie from Vienna! Kate from NY. Never, never you are alone if you manage to avoid heat strokes.

Hasna finally calls me Tuesday evening, a week late.

I am on my way to Casablanca on Wednesday 10th of August..

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Casa, Rabat, Mohammedia. Prep-time again.

Joy is great when I see her. She conducts her life. She has made a decision. A difficult one.

Her parents in Muslim tradition have rejected to compromise. "I'd be prepared to run as well!" She once expressed to me...

Rabat is where the Mali embassy is. Casablanca, where the Mauritanian is.

Hasna has her vaccinations done at the Institut Pasteur in Casablanca for a fourth of what the BA-Travel Clinic charges in London, Piccadilly.

And I buy new tyres, BFGoodrich All-Terrains, as MUDs are not avail in Morocco.

Needless to say that I spend many more hours discussing the state of the vehicle with various mechanics. It leaks, not much but in many places. Especially Said is one Land Rover mechanic Garage Halif, 36, rue de Dax-Roches Noire, Casablanca (Tel +212 (0) 22 40 62 21).

Also I frequently (5 times) visit a dentist to sort out a problem on one tooth that had resurfaced a few month ago.

In Mohammedia, about 30km north from Casablanca, on a campground we install ourselves to rearrange all our stuff.

And we are back in the business of cooking great food for ourselves. Hasna prepares the Moroccan food like lemon chicken tagine and the lamp and vegetable Cous-Cous whereas I am responsible for the Indian chicken curry, Chinese chicken and rice and all the Spaghetti and Pasta.

Hasna manages to get all her stuff together and leave her former life in less then 2 weeks. Quite a remarkable accomplishment.

We get ready just in time. My parent's plane lands in Casablanca Mohamed V International Airport on Tuesday 23rd of August.

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Marrakech, 23 to 26 Aug.

Marrakech is a bit of a shock for my parents initially. It shall take till Agadir until they feel totally comfortable with country, people and food. Only too normal.

My dad and I take it easy and allow ourselves a couple of bottles of Moroccan red every other evening.

After all they are residing in the Sofitels and Palace de Roses. Life is not too complicated there.

Hasna and I have our arms Henna tattooed in Marrakech, a must have for every tourist. It took me nearly 6 month to get convinced.

Hasna getting her henna tattoo, on the Jeema El Fna, Land Rover in back
Henna on Jeema El Fna.
Hasna and tattoo
Sleeping and Henna Tatoo. Both protects against Jinns.

I have spent a lot of time here in Marrakech. A lot of time on my own which allowed me to observe intensely and fall in love with the city, its smells and colours, its food and atmosphere.

Even though there is still a great deal of hassling of tourists going on.

Even though the numerous incidents when a drug dealer whispers "Hashish" in your ear quickly adding "Cheap, good quality". When you decline he still does not let you go. "What are you looking for, women? I can organise anything!" Eventually you tell him to FO. And then he tells you a "Allah, there is only one god" or "You are in my country". Are these reasons for drug and whore trafficking?

Even though some people called Hasna "a pute", a slut. "This is not a women, she is a whore". An angry man near the tannery. We only wanted to visit the tannery and not buy in his shop. Quickly he made off into hiding, was never seen again when I was outraged, confronted him and all 30 or so man standing around with what he has just said. Of course they have never heard of "Ni putes ni soumises", "Neither whore nor submissive". Not that I expected.

Being with Hasna and showing it. A foreigner, a Moroccan girl, and not married (but that they don't know). A little revolution we bring to that country. It is too much for some of them. Especially for those that believe, women are inferior to men in every respect.

I think still much education is needed. Some women rights revolution is needed and some is under way already. Women in Morocco past the age of 24 have the right to go where they want. Thanks to Mohammed VI.

I like Marrakech, am happy to take the challenge and happy to be part of the change.

Hasna and ms, Jeema  El Fna, Oranges
When Leaving Marrakech ...
Hasna and ms and Land Rover, Jeema El Fna
... we park the Landy right on Jeema El Fna.

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Essaouira and - Agadir again.

Flash photography, something I never liked. But since I discovered rear flash-light photography, I am about to change my mind. The bar of the Sofitel in Essaouira allows some experiments. The outcome good enough for the family picture album.

my father, no pics pls
My father, no pics pls.
my father
Got him still.

my mother, explaining something
My mother, no closes up pics pls.
my mother and half of Hasna, think they are listening to the rubbish I am talking
Why don't you take any pictures, never we have any pictures.
my mother and Hasna
Hasna and my mother.
Hasna, close up
Close up.
ms
Myself, Manfred Schweda, ms.

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The real adventure is about to start.

We have landed in Agadir a few days ago. The olds are really happy and relaxed, even venture on a tour to Taroudant themselves. Daddy has even agreed to go camel (dromedary) riding with mummy. Now he is going over the top. Surely. Still have to listen to the reports how that went...

It is Saturday 3rd of September. While I whack out this page Hasna and my Mum relax at the pool of the Palais des Roses. This hotel is famous for playing the worst music in all Morocco (the kind of music you hear in lifts or shopping malls, a real casse-tête, the food is pretty average too.

But my father likes it. And the pool area is larger then anything I have seen so-far. After all it was me choosing it.

Hasna and I seems to be going really well. Lets see what we make out of it.

We will leave Agadir soon to travel south, via Tan-Tan, then Laayoune and Dahkla of the Western Sahara to reach Mauritania.

I have become acquainted with Morocco recently. The new unknown of Mauritania and later Mali and Niger will pose new threats and perils of all sorts that I (now we) have not experienced before. Anew we will begin assessing situations as we move forward slowly.

I am excited. It is fair to say that now the real adventure starts.

www.thisfabtrek.com > journey > africa > morocco > 20050831-agadir

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