The last few days from Marrekech to Fes have been a whirlwind. There has hardly been a chance to take photos let alone a sketch. Yesterday, exploring Fes has been a highlight. This has been what I imagined Morocco to be. In the old city thousands of people live in a labyrinth of narrow (sometimes only a metre wide) streets. Some doorways were massive for the horse to enter and within that was a smaller one for every day use. There are community bakeries where people can take their food to be put in their wood fired ovens and either buy their bread or have their own bread baked there. We saw lots of children with trays of bread on their heads, bringing it home for their mothers. The Madina or marketplace was massive and so interesting. There are sections for each type of product for sale, for example for the leather, for the ceramics, food, spices, dying material, weaving, metal work, mosaics, food, fruit and veg and much more. Many of the stalls had people working, sewing, dying material, making the metal items etc. A person would be lost so easily as there are thousands of lanes. We went to a mosaic factory to see how the fountains and tables are made. They also made ceramics and painted he traditional designs on them. The tannery was fascinating although very, very odourous. There were hundreds of vats outside and the process of making an animal hide into soft leather could be seen. They use natural dyes from flowers and plants to make the colours. It didn't look very healthy from the men who worked their physically attending to this process.
The food has been wonderful and we have gone to some people's homes and eaten meals and to some restaurants that you would never know existed from the street or if you were a regular tourist. I am loving he tag ins and cous cous dishes and am now a great fan of mint tea.
Yesterday afternoon we went to a Hassam which is a bathhouse. We were scrubbed within an inch of our lives. It was quite an experience and great fun.