When we get back, Sam is up. Mike and Carol are leaving to spend the rest of their holiday out on the coast, taking it easy. We plan to head to Marakesh.
On the way to Marakesh, Sam insists on taking a detour to see a signpost to the humourously named town of 'El Kebab'.
Sam is concerned about parking Elsa out in a town with all the gear stuck on her roof and sides. There's a hotel mentioned in the guide book that has underground parking, so we decide to try and find it. I use the map in the Lonely Planet guide to plot a route through the town centre to it. But I forgot that this would take us into the Medina.
We end up hopelessly lost in the place. Narrow alleyways, people, donkeys, carts, trucks. If you want to try it yourself, then try my Lost In Marakesh page!
Eventually a man on a moped leads us into the square. Its chaos. Full of local people and tourists wandering around, and taxis and donkeys and trucks.
We spot the hotel and I jump out and run in. There's a sign telling me its full. I jump back into Elsa and give out the bad news. We decide to get out of the mad zone and into the main part of town to find a hotel.
Elsa is parked up on a side street in the modern quarter and Sam trots off to find some accomodation. Abbie and I hang around and wait, and as the sun sets and darkness falls, the Muezzin calls the faithful to prayer at the mosque just along the road, and we watch them passing by in their great cloaks and robes.
Sam comes back, and he's found a hotel. Its now dark and we hope he can find it again. We do, but by the time we've parked out on the busy street, the room has gone. Back to square one, and now its dark.
Now, Sam and I wander off to look for somewhere. We walk into one hotel, and I say something out loud about it being a bit posh for us. We walk out again. But thats it. There's nothing else. So we go back in, and they have a suite for 3 for 1100 dirhams, a price that's probably a lot for a Moroccan, but not bad for us. Especially if it really is a 3-star hotel. It even has parking outside with some guys who are paid to watch the cars. Sam seems satisfied.
We return to Elsa and bring her and Abbie back to the Hotel Tafoukt. The room is neat and tidy, with a double bedroom, a bathroom with a proper flushing toilet (we haven't seen one of them for a couple of weeks), a fridge, and a living room with a couple of long bench seat/beds and a TV. We don't recognise any of the channels, but one of them looks like the Arabic version of CNN - Arabic News Network?
We get dinner included. Although its late, they serve us. Sam and Abbie get a tajine of some description and I get a salad. After all the miles he's driven its only fair that Sam gets the double bed all to himself.