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National Everything Closed Day

Nador, Morocco

So we stashed the car in Almeria and hopped the night ferry to Nador, waking up Bright eyed and ready to make our way down to Fes. Stepped out of the ferry port, ready to face the wave of hustlers, false guides, and "freelance" taxi drivers that had plagued my every step the last time I was in this country. "Elbows up. Make for the taxi ranks and don't make eye contact or respond to anybody no matter what! Ready... Go!!!"

Uh... Stepped a couple more steps... (insert sound of crickets chirping)... watched a tumbleweed roll past...

December 22, 2007 happened to coincide with the Muslim calendar's high holiday of sacrifice, whereby the head of every household must find a tasty looking sheep and slaughter it for his family. This takes precedence over everything else, including taxi driving, hotel operating and restauranteering. Nador ferry port is 15 dusty kilometers from Nador town. Both are deserted, as is the road connecting them. We're screwed.

Somehow, we found a lift from a passing motorist who dropped us off on the dusty, empty streets of Nador, where we ascertained that the bus station was closed, no grand taxis were operating, and we were every bit as stuck as we feared. The only unlocked door in the whole town belonged to the 4 star hotel on the sea, which at least kept us from starving to death that afternoon.

Finding a couple other travelers in the same predicament, we arranged a grand taxi all the way to Fes the next morning, banged on the door of the cheap hotel across the street until they let us in, and waited out the day as sheep blood flowed in the streets and the smell of roast meat wafted from closed doorways.

permalink written by  Jason Kester on December 22, 2007 from Nador, Morocco
from the travel blog: Morocco for no apparent reason
tagged Holiday and Goat

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