Africa

Shopping in Marrakech by Míriam

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That was our last whole day in Marrakech. The day dawned splendid and it was not cold on the terrace of the riad. We were waiting for some pancakes with tea, yogurt and juice for breakfast. I was definitely going to miss breakfast on the terrace!

That morning we wanted to dedicate her to walk in the souks and go shopping. We wanted to visit the dyer's souk after seeing photos in the guides of their inner courtyards with dyes and fabrics. It took us a bit to locate the souk in particular and, on the way, we bought some souvenirs and chatted with a vendor.

When we finally arrived, we realized that the inner courtyards with dye deposits were not accessible, but a friendly seller with business perspectives made us go to his shop and explained a little the dyeing process, always with natural ingredients: poppy for red, for green, indigo for blue ... He showed us his dyed fabrics and, suddenly, he tried one of his Berber-style fabrics. The truth is that I was very funny! Finally, however, we do not buy anything. Although I liked the handkerchief he tried on me, the bargaining is not my thing and I let it run ...

When shopping, our plan was to visit the «Artisanal Ensemble», a craft center where prices were already marked. There was everything but what I was just looking for: a set of glasses for tea. So I had no choice but to go back to the souks and haggle!

To return to the medina, we were seduced by the idea of ​​going in a buggy. The day was splendid and hot, a luxury in early December, so why not enjoy a short walk? After asking a few drivers for prices, in the end we reached an agreement with one that took us to our destination, the Mellah.

The Mellah is the old Jewish quarter, where you can still visit the synagogue, which was our intention. We enter through a kind of covered market, with very colorful spice stops. As we moved along the alleys, we realized that it was a very humble neighborhood, and many children offered to guide us to the synagogue in exchange for a handout. The synagogue itself was nothing special either, so after taking a look, we went back to the nearby Qzadria square to find a place to eat. Isabel's friends had recommended a restaurant and we went there. On the way to the restaurant, we passed a few craft stores where they sold tea sets. What a coincidence! In one of them there were all kinds of glasses, of all colors, decorated with paint and with alpaca ("German silver").

I decided that I wasn't going to get out of there without a set of glasses, even if I had to haggle. The seller told me the price of a very nice hand painted set. And then we told him that we also liked a silver tray and proposed a price. In the end, I got a ridiculous discount for everything, but the conversation with the seller was very enjoyable and, in addition, we gave him a small lesson in Catalan and he wrote it all down in a notebook.

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