Essaouira July 2007.
At some stage we find time to head down to Essaouira for a few days another time to Marrakech. But apart from that we spend most time preparing what should be the best fête dans l'année.
Henna is being performed when some needs celebrating. Like the circumcision of the boys Daniel and David, or marriage of Hasna and myself. Henna usually predates the actual festivities. Henna is more relaxed, not that much of a protocol.
Before marriages Henna is compulsory.
Henna is for women - more then for men.
Circumcision Celebration and fête de mariage.
When you travel, the biggest thing is attend a wedding, see how people in the world celebrate their special events.
Never would I have thought in Feb 2005 when I entered Morocco for the first time that I would attend my own wedding here someday, in fact recognise Morocco as home, call my own kin Moroccan.
And all come, my parents, my sister, and more family, my best friends, from Austria and France.
Well, circumcision for boys is very important too Moroccan culture - and was carried out long before the fete.
And Hasna wanted something similar to a fête de mariage, "for all those who come from far". I have been largely involved in the preparations and all should go well. I am totally relaxed but I have not got much an idea what is coming up.
Later in the month after David has taken a heatstroke in Marrakech (actually it was raining that day we spent there), or was he just teething, or was it measles, anyway after all has calmed down a bit, my parents and friends have left and are back in Vienna ... and David is back well, we take to the countryside.
Some more impressions.
30th of August, Casablanca still.
Hasna has left with the boys for Vienna and winter.
I miss them already.
It is a choice.
I buy a toothpaste (we had been constantly running out of it here), sprays against mosquitoes as much as I can (of course against Malaria not in Morocco but from Nouakchott onwards, only not getting bitten 200 times a day helps), toilet paper, two more photo memory cards and a (only) medium stock of beers (the holy month of Ramadan (wiki) approaches fast).
Maybe some fasting/refraining from the spirit does me well after these many last months.
And I set out for the African adventure.
Well melancholy, - not so much. While I finally upload this page still in Casa, I am listening to the Foly double CD live album by fantastic Habib Koité, whom we have seen play in Mali, in Segou nearly 2 years ago.
I love my family, but also my heart beats in Africa.
One more: Morocco is going to vote a new parliament September 7th (Magharebia). TV is full of campaigning party spots and due state sponsored education how to vote and to vote. Just fragmentation (33 or so parties that run) asserts no party will gain an outright majority, - and no clear strong opposition will emerge either.
And Moroccans are a bit disillusioned after all those years when elections results were falsified under Interior Minister Driss Basri (globalvoicesonline). For democracy to merit trust it needs many more years. But the process towards more transparency under King Mohammed VI has started. M6, how they call him, "the best politician in the world" some say. Truly remarkable how he has reshaped his country. Let's see whether Moroccans are ready for it.
Stay tuned for updates.