Thursday, June 25, 2015

Sometimes I make decisions...

...like booking a ticket to Morocco.

That's right. I'm heading to Marrakech on Monday. Just for a few days--I arrive Monday evening, and I leave Thursday morning. I'm staying at a riad right in the medina (old city), so I shouldn't have to walk too far for many of the major tourist attractions.

Why? Because I found an inexpensive flight. Because I've never been to Africa. Because adventure.

Am I worried? Kind of, but mostly about getting to and from the airport. The internet seems to think it's a safe enough place for women to travel alone, and supposedly the whole pace of life there calms a bit during Ramadan, so hopefully it won't be as overwhelming as it might otherwise be.

I bought some more conservative clothes and a scarf today, and a guidebook with maps. (It's going to be over 100 degrees when I'm in Morocco, so the layering is an unfortunate but necessary step.) Luckily for me, Les Soldes are going on in France right now--all the clothes in all the stores are 30-50% off.  I wish bookstores also participated in Les Soldes, but what are you going to do?

What else? I went to the Couvent des Jacobins the other day--yet another giant religious building in Toulouse. The Dominican monks started a convent there in the 1200s, and they stayed there until the Revolution, and later Napoleon turned it into a military barracks, because of course he did. Some of St. Thomas Aquinas' relics are there beneath the altar. As expected, it was stunningly beautiful:

Interior of the church

Little lamb on the ceiling

Courtyard

Tower + Tree

This is how you selfie

It was very peaceful there. I would have liked to stay longer and read, but I didn't know if that was an acceptable thing to do. 

This weekend Le Marathon des Mots and Les Siestes Electroniques (a literature festival and an electronic music festival, respectively) are going on in Toulouse, so I imagine I'll probably end up doing some of that. You know me. I'm a sucker for large cultural events.

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