Marrakech, Morocco; Day 3

This morning was spent hanging out at the Riad reading, doing laundry etc. For lunch we wandered around the corner to a 300 year old building that was once a Farouk or hotel. Today it is the home of a local restaurant Terrasse La Medersa. We chose a table on the roof terrace which was extremely pleasant looking over the alleys below.

Roof table for lunch

We tried another traditional Moroccan dish – this time Chicken Pastilla (sometimes bastilla) or chicken pie. We were a little skeptical on this one. It’s a blend of savory and sweet flavors – saffron chicken, omelet, spices plus almonds all wrapped in a layered pastry with powdered sugar and cinnamon. Turns out it is was one of the most complex mix of flavors Brian and Tiffany have ever tasted and it was very good (the kids declined and we were fine to let them, it was small and we wanted it all.

Chicken Pastilla

It’s probably not an eat-every-day dish for us, it was quite rich, but we’d have it again for sure. The kids all chose the chicken sandwich and fries which had a Moroccan spin and was very good too.

After lunch we headed back into the souk. This time there were some specific items we were seeking. Brian was interested in a new hat – the $6 one from Thailand extended its stay in Egypt (whoops!).

CreeperKitty also decided it was time to purchase a chess set. He’s been interested in the game since he joined Chess Club at school a couple of years ago and he’s pretty good. He’s browsed sets in Thailand, Kenya and Egypt and yesterday found some here he liked. He negotiated for a price lower than he was willing to pay and brought home a hand carved wooden set. It’s perfect for travel since the board folds into a carry box.

We retraced our steps from yesterday and headed back to the main square. Looking for a suitable hat and other must haves all the while. When we arrived it’s a good thing we were thirsty since there were a dozen juice stands lined up side by side all calling for our business. The guy we chose quickly put the boys to work.

Helping out in the juice stand

Our last purchase of the day was not a hat – maybe we’ll try for that again tomorrow – but a magic wooden box CreeperPuppy fell in love with. Like the chess sets, these are available all over the souk and he checked several places until he found the box and price he liked best.

CreeperPuppy and his magic box

Our next stop was the local Arcade that we’d spotted as we entered the neighborhood on Saturday. It’s very different than the one in Hurghada. It’s a hole in the wall with three video games, a couple of foosball tables and a small pool table. All the machines seem to take 1 MAD coins (Moroccan dirham, worth about a dime) and we only had two with no options for more change. They couldn’t get the foosball table to take the coin despite help from some locals so it was a disappointment. Maybe we’ll try again tomorrow.

Once we got back to the Riad, CreeperKitty broke out the chess set and Mom agreed to a game. Two minutes later the game was over. It only took the boy three moves to checkmate her – a great way to break in the new souvenir.

CreeperKitty’s new chess set

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