14 February 2007

10 bad things about Morocco

I found this information here on a blog( diario de marrocos) tought it might interest some of us.

10 bad things about Morocco

  1. Some people trying to sell you Haxixe ( Marijuana )
  2. I’m still thinking on position 2 on this matter
  3. Very poor people in isolated regions of the Atlas Mountains
  4. “Guardians”, or, a bunch of guys that call themselves that way just to keep an eye on people’s vehicles
  5. Some intolerance between Arabs and Amazigh, Amazigh and Arabs
  6. Some junkies and some drunk guys with bad humour in major cities
  7. All Moroccans think that if tourists travel to Morocco, then, Morocco is a better country than all the rest
  8. Some shops ask 10 times more money that they should, so you have to negotiate and bargain things you want to buy
  9. Some crazy truck drivers on the roads
  10. There is no toilet paper in a normal bathroom and some stinky ones also ( expect hotels of course ) / Expect to bump into: “The Hole”, which is good since you don’t really have to touch anything


taamarbuuta said...

Wow, what an odd list! What's so bad about car guardians? I love them!

Bouba said...

thank you for your comment.
1-yes it is so odd. i was surprised to read it too. this is the perspective of comodification that i find a little difficult to understand. but oh well…
2-are you usinghttp://www.cocomment.com/, i think it is a great tool.
3- i am glad you went to Nouiga’s place. it is one of my favorite spots in Rabat. i like L'appartement 22 Abdellah Karroum.
i hope you are enjoying your Rabat tour.
4- i really like your Merzouga pictures. very very good shots.

Bouba said...

link i tamarbouta

Anonymous said...

Now, even if you are not in Rabat, you can listen to R22, the Radio Station of L'appartement 22. www.radioapartment22.com

Lakhal said...

I think that you went to a bad nieberhood. I visited many cities in Morocco, and its one of the best countries I had visited.
12 good things about Morocco

People share: Stories, water, food, money, everything. Within the immediate family there are no boundaries of sharing. Everyone works and everyone contributes.

Balances, checks, paybacks and all uptight penny pinching we do in North America and Europe just isn’t done. Sharing is expected, and if one has it, you share it, including meals with strangers*.

People listen: Women when they meet often all talk at once, which is an amazing thing to experience. No one feels left out or ignored. No one resents it. On the other hand, when someone is telling a story, no one interrupts, no one comments, until the story is finished. Oral tradition is alive and well. 1000 year old stories are still told today in the Jemaa El Fna in Marrakech. Communication earns respect, patience, consideration, time... which brings us to the next item.

Time isn’t important: When was the last time you met someone who didn’t know their birthday? Didn’t know their age? Didn’t care? Who will wait an hour for a bus to do a task, and take all day to do it? Go to the bank, the post office, pay a bill, but if they meet a friend along the way take time to chat, have a tea, and hear their news and tell a few good stories? In Morocco there is always another day tomorrow and another after that. The word dead-line doesn't exist.

Sunday is a real day off: Sunday is for family and friends. Almost everybody takes the day to go to the park for a picnic under the olive trees, a little drumming, singing, dancing, laughing, make a tagine, have a sleep. Most people don’t work Sundays unless they have a foreign boss.

Lots of holidays: The Prince’s birthday, a full month in Ramadan, a full month in August, Fete Mouton 3 weeks, numerous days here and there. None of the Long Weekend crush where everyone tries to squeeze a good time into frantic 3 days… Who’s responsible for that idea anyway?

Which brings us to driving: Accidents surprisingly are few, contrary to what people assume about developing countries and the state of the roads. Moroccans are generally slow safe drivers, rarely going over 50 kmh in the city. What do you expect when a donkey cart goes little faster than a walking man? When there is an encounter it's usually very minor and instead of raging anger, people often wave, smile and shake hands saying sorry brother or sister. Really!

Respect for Elders: Have you ever seen a gang of teenagers give their bus seats to an elder or a woman with her children? Elders are deeply respected, for their memories, good advice and wisdom, as well as those old home remedies that their mom or gram taught them. Which brings us to…

Witchcraft: Alive and well in Morocco. Not allowed under Islam, but practiced all the same. Gives the whole country an air of deep mystery and romance about the old ways with a little bit of horror thrown in. The Koran actually teaches about Angels, djinns and devils. Everyone believes, everyone knows, everyone has heard stories, or experienced it first hand.

Trees are Sacred: Or why is that palm tree in the middle of the road? Because it couldn’t cross to the other side? No, it’s because the road crew was not allowed to cut it down. It says so in the Koran and so it will not be done. Trees are essential to life in the desert. Matter of fact trees are essential everywhere, but not everybody’s elder's wisdom told them this is so.

Family before Work: Often people just don’t show up for work or school. Aside from a mishap or sickness, most often the reason is the family needs them for something. Help dad buy a sheep for Fete Mouton, or harvest the apricots, or help granny to the doctors. All perfectly good reasons and readily accepted. Who can question family before industry?

You can Yell on the Street: Home is where the manners are kept in check, where women rule the roost and secrets are divulged. Street is the domain of men where anything goes and it sometimes does. But in a society where public drunkenness is rare, things are pretty calm generally. You might witness a good yelling session with dire verbal threats, but that will be the end of it. Strangers will often get involved telling their opinion and asking the anguished to “broaden your mind”.

Blessings are Real: When someone gives you a blessing it is considered a real possibility it will come true, not just said to be nice. Downside is casual remarks are not thrown away and forgotten but taken very seriously. If you tell someone they have an evil laugh they will literally believe you believe they are with the devil.

OK this is number 13: But I love this one. Kids play on the street after dark. Enough said?

* I was once with a friend and his policeman father on the street waiting for a friend to come by. The policeman father stopped a passing stranger who was carrying a big plate. He asked “What’s that, couscous?” The stranger showed his mother’s pride and joy, called his friend to bring some bread and everyone happily shared the meal on the hood of a car.

I hope everyone can come to Morocco someday. If you do, take the time to enjoy the people and the country. There is a lot to learn from this culture.

Warm regards and healthy travelling,

Robbin Yager

Anonymous said...

Hi everybody! i can name myself as jesicah... I want to work in morocco... ive heard that is a good place and i have relatives there... Need your help,,, i graduated BSBA.. anybody can help me with this particular topic? thanks...

Anonymous said...

Hi everybody,
I am a Moroccan, and I agree with this list, I hate guardians. If you are a young tourist you are more likely to be asked if you want buy drugs, and yes you will be charged a lot more when you shop at bazaars and traditional clothing stores, some restaurants, and when using cabs or chariots. The country is so poor and the people seem to not notice it. Yes we share lots of stuff but we usually do it because the society expects us to do so not because of noble believe but to save face. And trust me we usually share with those who don’t really need us to share with them. And if you think about it we share with you tourist because you are richer than us : ), and that is the rule for you at least in most cases. To sum it up I believe that the whole country thinks that our shit whole in the desert is a good a place to be, also deny the fact that everybody wants out. I left that shit and I only go back there because I miss my family.
Peace everyone

Anonymous said...

Hi there,moroccan women are very dirty and untidy. I just moved 2 doha as qatarairways staff,was given company housing,my housmates are moroccans,and hey i was shocked to find a kitchen turned into a dustbin,maggots, stench,stagnant water,hey i threw up! And you know what,these girls have not bothered to clean up. Those are moroccan women for you! Wink.

Anonymous said...

no idon't think so that bad