Ait Benhaddou and the Tizi n Tischka pass

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The view from the road in Morocco is almost always fascinating.
  But famous filming sites are often the places one finds tour busses lined up, and the simulacrum of the place seems to turn tourists and Moroccans alike into simulacra of themselves.

This is not to say we didn’t enjoy Ait Benhaddou, just that what we enjoyed most were the little surprises.
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Jeremy loved crossing the river on the sandbags serving as stepping stones.
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Rugs drying on a rooftop are not exactly surprising in Morocco, but they’re a sign that real life still goes on underneath the tourist spectacle.  And I like storks in any context.
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We went up the cliff instead of the path, pretending to be invaders attacking the fortress–at least until Jeremy got too hot and bothered.
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I swear this man’s single-stringed instrument sounded unbelievably like a jazz trumpet. He didn’t seem to have a large repertoire, but the one song he kept playing was really compelling.
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Jeremy made friends with this puppy, who then liked us so much–and wanted attention so much–that he leapt at me repeatedly and ripped a hole in my trousers with his teeth.  So I chucked a stone at him (in his general direction, being careful not to hit him), and a group of young German-looking tourists promptly surrounded him with love to compensate for the ugly American.  I was tempted to wait and watch what happened when they tried to leave.

The view from the agadir or granary on the top of the hill really is quite spectacular.
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But then so was the Tizi n’ Tischka pass.  Just past Ait Benhaddou, the earth itself turned the most amazing colors,
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then coming over the pass, the climate changed and the landscape turned a stunning green.
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On to Marrakesh…

 

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