Just Faces


Seen the movie Mr. Nice tonight. Buffy had recorded it. We had never heard of it. Yet, it is a true story of drug smuggling, Ireland, and  bureaucracy.
It led me to instigate a word press blog post.  Been a bit non-committal of late with blogging.

I went to my posts on Morocco and found the one that tells the best of Tangier. The streets, the people. The dead chickens swinging in the putrid air.

Road to Tangier

I remember staying late into the night at Baba’s. The cafe the Rolling Stones frequented during visits. It was an ethereal world of burning incense. The swirls of hashish circling and weaving the room covered with mats.

Cafebaba

It must not have bothered me walking down the narrow stairs, the crooked steps that led from Baba’s back into the Medina and then the Petit Succo where we would get a cab the remainder of the way back uptown to 62 Rue Delacroix.

Buffy was invariably sleeping and her dad usually carried her. In retrospect this was a good thing because I would have probably been unable to do so in my state of oblivion.

Months before, when we first came into the city we were broke. I would meet men. My mate would arrange the set ups. I recall it was always in a huge place and others seemed to be doing the same thing so it really didn’t bother me. The man would order a complete feast of food for us. Then I would go off with him and hubby would stay with Buffy. I was never gone long and always came back with a good sum of money.

Mohammad the man who rented the apartment to us grabbed me one day and pinned me up against the wall and had his way with me. Things were always fast and impersonal. He had (Red Roses) delivered to our apartment and a note saying the rent was free for the following month.

My hubby did not arrange that one. Many men were called Mohammad. On one occasion I was told to go inside. I looked to see that they had prevented him from entry. I seen him leaning up against the door as I entered the room. That was a bit frightening for me.

After he was busted I was only with Ahmad the man we met on Halloween prior to my husband’s arrest on conspiracy charges.

It was better for me and safer. The other men were just faces in the darkness. Fully dressed, sweaty, fumbling , intense, and in a hurry. That was fine.

Ahmad had a beautiful face. He was in his late 40’s I suppose, married to several women and had many children. He was wealthy and shared his wealth as only Philanthropists do. He resembled Jimi Hendricks and was known as “Hole in the Head” He was also known as “King of the Hashish” The high was dreamy and detached, like that of opium or a sedative-hypnotic prescription drug, combined with a mildly hallucinogenic overlay. It was smoked in a jeweled golden sipsi. My shoes falling behind me as I walked from the hash den, looking down I realized they were on my feet?

Tripping off of smoke

When we returned to the States we could not get high on any pot or hash that our friends said was the best. We had been spoiled and it took some time for the effects we experienced in Tangier to dissipate.

Even now after all these years when I smoke a chillum, take a bong hit or a few tokes I am seemingly reconnected to the same high I experienced in Tangier.

He expanded. When I was there in 1971, he had the back room as the Bain. Then from the back, more pillows and the stairs leading to the loft. I guess he went up, the only way you can go.

Tangiers’ sheltering, and ever inspiring, vividly blue sky.

Ahmed a(h)-med as a boy’s name is pronounced AH-med. It is of Arabic origin, and the meaning of Ahmed is “highly praised or one who constantly thanks God”. One of the many names of the prophet Muhammad, and popular with American Muslims.

Ahmed has 10 variant forms: Achmad, Achmed, Ahmaad, Ahmad, Ahmet, Ahmod, Amad, Amadi, Amahd and Amed.

He gave food and clothing to the children in the mountains in the coldest of winter. Jilbab’s to warm them and shoes for their bare feet.

Jilbab

In every café a picture of him was right there along with the prized picture of King Hassan.  He knew what he wanted and he secured what he wanted. I was his chosen one. Now, I realize I was chosen only until I no longer obeyed him. I obeyed him unknowingly at times, his will had a control over me.

So many chances, and so many times I was in serious circumstances and did not even know the extent of the darkness I had allowed.

This is an attempt at rewriting a chapter of my story about my stay in Tangier. I left so much out.

My Feelings.

Story Excerpt “Jasmine Remains”

I allowed myself to be used by my husband because I felt I needed to survive. Being in a foreign country, having just one person that is supposed to be your savior in all ways to allow such things to happen. Shaking my head at the betrayal of it.

I was raised to believe that you believe in your husband and that you do what needs to be done to keep things operating smoothly. I grew up on that journey. Coming back home to the states it did not take me long to separate myself from him. Maybe it was the times, free love, intoxication of drugs and a different thought process.

Regretfully, but for some unknown reason or reasons I allowed myself to be used and abused in future relationships. My self-esteem seemed to have no cares.

I began to realize that I used men for love and attention. Many years it involved going down the wrong paths and falling into all the wrong holes in the sidewalk.

I feel free.

I am not involved with anyone romantically, but I know if that feeling ever comes my way again I will value and appreciate the powerful force that I am.

I will never allow abuse from anyone in the name of love, drugs or insecurities.

I will no longer be drained by their vampire need to control. I am in control. I hold my own reigns.

My ongoing journey is progressing smoothly Smile

This song reminds me of my sojourn. It’s Jazz the way I like it too.

Well I’m buckled up inside
It’s a miracle that I’m alive
I do not think I can survive
On bread and wine alone
To think that I could have fallen
A centimeter to the left
Would not be here to see the sunset
Or have myself a time
(refrain)
Well why do the hands of time
So easily unwind
Some lessons we learn the hard way
Some lessons don’t come easy
That’s the price we have to pay
Some lessons we learn the hard way
They don’t come right off and right easy
That’s why they say some lessons learned we learn the hard way
Remember the sound of the pavement
World turned upside down
City streets unlined and empty
Not a soul around
Life goes away in a flash
Right before your eyes
If I think real hard well I reckon
I’ve had some real good times
(refrain)
Well why do the hands of time
So easily unwind
Some lessons we learn the hard way
Some lessons don’t come easy
That’s the price we have to pay
Some lessons we learn the hard way
They don’t come right off and right easy
That’s why they say some lessons learned we learn the hard way

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Tangier Journal


We first arrived in Tangier by way of a very old over crowded bus. The  dirt roads, rolling hills separating Ceuta from the port of  Tangier. We had come across the Straights of  Gibraltar.
It was a long ride. We had to stop constantly because of bad roads, cows laying out in the noon day’s heat. Not to mention problems with the bus brakes. A 29 mile harrowing adventure.

Our first impression of Tangier consisted of very young boys trying to sell us kif and hashish.

Pension Miami was the first place we stayed. Rhea was not completely potty trained and the balcony came in handy to air out our sleeping gear. 

Later, we rented a very nice apartment at 62 Rue Delacroix with two bedrooms,a balcony, a nice roof top and pull chain latrine.

Our camera and all pictures were confiscated by the Moroccan police.

Here is a link to some great pictures of  Tangier,Morocco

Halloween in Tangier

Halloween at any time is a strange time, but I will never forget October 31st 1971. We had decided we would drop white lighting and go to the disco (Underground). I was going with the girls, and Evans would stay home with his latest love interest. The acid was so pure. The big pits in the ground looked like huge craters, and all the black cats were arching their backs and looked like panthers. We made our way to the club. James Brown was playing on their sound system. The beads I had on broke and looked like they were falling in slow motion. We had a blast.

In the morning light, the smell of the Moroccan Rose and Jasmine filled the air, it had seemed so much heavier the night before. The pure white was wearing off. I went to the bakery and picked out fresh loaves of bread, tearing the insides out and leaving just the shell. Then I brought some to the apartment and Evans made coffee.

I must tell you what happened Halloween Eve. Evans and I had taken Rhea to the store to get her some Moroccan chocolates. We could not afford the snickers that she wanted, which she was not very pleased about.

There he stood! A man looking like Jimmi  Hendrix, flashy clothes, big wads of American money. I looked at him, and he started walking towards me. I whispered to Evans that I thought perhaps we had been dealing with the wrong people. He gave Rhea a snickers and candy to every child in the store.

He came very close to me and invited us to his shop.

I was very interested.

His name was Ahmad.

Totem – Snake


Interesting…

Researching,and realized my birth totem is the Snake.In Tangiers I was attracted to Cobra’s and took many pictures of them.When I returned home I brought a statue of a Cobra with red beaded eyes that was given too me as a gift.
During this time I played the ouija board and the cobra’s eyes actually glowed.It frightened me at the time and I threw it out a third floor window.I never retrieved it.

Oct 23 – Nov 22
Birth Moon: Freeze Up
Animal Totem: Snake
Mineral Totem: Copper & Malachite
Plant Totem: Thistle
Directional Totem: Grizzly Bear
Elemental Clan Totem: Frog
Affinity Color: Orange
Personality Traits: purposeful, determined, imaginative, intense, impulsive, mysterious, discerning, ambitious, clear, decisive

Snake

Because of its ability to periodically shed its skin, the snake represents transformation, change, and renewal. And those born with Snake as their birth totem are inclined to shed their skins by way of making dramatic, and sometimes drastic, changes in their lives from time to time, letting go of their current ties and attachments, and starting again anew. They may make sudden decisions such as to quit their job, or change their occupation, or sell their house, or move to a new city, or totally reinvent themselves. Sometimes, however, they make these changes at inopportune times, thereby causing unnecessary upset and suffering to themselves as well as to others.

Change isn’t necessarily always easy for Snake people, but they are adaptable to anything that is new to them. For Snake people, their lives are usually a lifelong transformation. They may start out making changes that are for purely selfish reasons.
However, as the Snake person goes through life, their selfish changes will usually eventually transform into more constructive changes which benefit not only themselves, but others as well. Snake people may also start out as insensitive and hurtful towards others, (see note below) but then their ability to wound will usually turn into the ability to heal. Snake people can be especially helpful to those suffering from alcoholism or drug abuse.

It has taken me many years to feel the power of the Phoenix.I was that Scorpion on the ground,stinging anything and everything that got in my way 🙂
Including myself.
When I knew the Dark Nights of my Soul were killing me I aspired to be a Eagle and fly free.
Blogging has opened up a new way of expressing myself.

At present I am in the process of slowing my incessant Chatter in my brain.

I feel like an Energized Bunny devouring an encyclopedia at times.

My sister always says “You are a open book”
My reply is “all the better to read and understand”
Sometimes I feel I am just getting started figuring out the real me.
You know what?
The Journey never ends.

My personal totem has always been the Dragonfly

Now that I am older I am drawn to the Phoenix

SmallerTransparentMy_phoenix_tatto

Totem – Snake.

Moroccan Mint Tea


Review written by Christine Benlafquih

Classic Moroccan Mint Tea is made by steeping green tea with spearmint leaves. Many families serve it more than once a day.

Moroccan tea pots vary in size, but a small pot typically holds about a half liter (six glasses) of tea, while a larger pot holds approximately a liter (12 glasses).

The measures below are for a small pot of tea and are approximates since tea leaves vary in quality and strength. Try a variety – not a brand – of green tea called Chinese Gunpowder.

The recipe reflects the fact that most Moroccans like their tea quite sweet. Adjust sugar to your personal taste.

Serves 2 to 4.

Moroccan Food

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Ingredients:
1 tablespoon Green Tea leaves
1 large handful fresh spearmint leaves, washed
1/2 liter (about 2 cups) boiling water
1/4 cup sugar
Preparation:
Boil at least a liter of water. Rinse a small tea pot with about 1/4 cup of the water.

Add the tea leaves and another 1/4 cup boiling water. Swirl the pot to wash and rinse the leaves, and pour out the water.

Add the mint leaves and the sugar, and fill the pot with 1/2 liter (about 2 cups) boiling water. Leave the tea to steep for five minutes or longer, or set the tea pot over medium-low heat and bring the tea to a simmer. Remove from the heat, and allow to steep several minutes more.

Gently stir the tea, pour into small tea glasses and serve.

Chefchaouen, Morocco: Shangri-La In The Rif | Cannabis Culture Magazine


I lived in Tangier in 1971 for 8 months with my 3 year old daughter and now ex husband.We hitch hiked through Europe.
A journey I will never forget.

Kif Pipe

Chefchaouen, Morocco: Shangri-La In The Rif | Cannabis Culture Magazine.

Abdul turned up with all the ingredients and started to work at once. First he boiled a little water in a shallow pan and mixed in about a cup of sugar. Then he mixed about a hundred grams of cooking chocolate into the sugar and water mix. When the chocolate had melted, he mixed in the Kif and finally the aniseed. We had to use an aniseed sweet as none of us has remembered to buy aniseed that day! Last but not least, about a hundred grams of almonds were crushed. Half the almonds were mixed in, and the other half sprinkled over the top before the Majoun was left to cool before eating. A few of the people present were frightened of eating it. They likened its effect to that of tripping! This I had to try! In the end there were only five of us eating Majoun; taking it with a spoon, making a ball with it in our hands, and swallowing the ball.

 

 

Son’s of Enkai


They deem themselves as sons of enkai –a monotheistic God, who gifted them with cattle – in fact all the cattle in the world. With this certain knowledge, they do not associate cattle raids with any guilt, but more like a restoration to the rightful owners.

Sons of Enkai · teaser#1 from NaturaHD on Vimeo.

http://vimeo.com/23499842


If this will not play and you have the latest Adobe Flash you can open in couch mode and it plays full screen.

Sons of Enkai

 

Trip on Majoun


Majoun is, perhaps, the most legendary of all psychoactive confections — a potent blend of dried fruits, nuts, spices, honey and cannabis.

This stuff made walls look like they were falling over. My shoes looked like they fell off my feet backwards and slowly drifted down the staircase…

Majoun