About four years ago my new husband and I took a trip to Morocco for our honeymoon. At the time, Ebola was spreading across western Africa in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia. Although these countries are about 3,900 miles from Morocco, further than the distance from Mexico to Canada, many of our friends and family worried about us traveling there.
Others worried about us traveling to a Muslim-majority country. This came from a wide misunderstanding that traveling to any Muslim country as a Westerner was dangerous. We knew that Morocco’s would culture and the religion of its people would play a part in our vacation and planned accordingly. Knowing it would be hot, I planned to dress modestly in long skirts and short sleeves to keep my shoulders covered and my husband planned to wear pants and short sleeves. We also knew that alcohol would likely not be on the menu.
We wanted to visit a number of places and knew that we did not want to drive on our own, so we worked with a tour company to plan a private tour with our own private driver. We didn’t speak the language and didn’t know the rules of the road in Morocco, and didn’t want to spend our honeymoon fighting about directions.
This turned out to be the smartest and one of the most memorable parts of our trip. Driving in Morocco was like nothing we had experienced before. I had been to Costa Rica, where the roads were only suggestions, but this was on another level. There were mountains, motorbikes, bicycles, children, carriages, and so many donkeys to contend with. And without our driver Mohammed we never would have been able to experience all of the beauty Morocco had to offer.
I wrote much more about our trip and what we ultimately learned from our driver in a short essay, “Seeing Through Mohammed’s Eyes.” The essay is now available in a new anthology, Corners: Voices on Change. The anthology features more than 20 essays about finding a way through change.
Special Offer – Free E-Book The e-book of Corners: Voices on Change is free for a limited time. Download at no cost until June 4, 2018.