Monday, 13 August 2012

Casablanca (and Tangier)



Casablanca is a place I’ve fancied visiting ever since I saw the famous movie starring Bogart and Bacall. Not a single scene in the movie, mind you, was actually shot in Casablanca. Another piece of trivia about the film is that the screenplay was based on a stage play that, at the time, had never had a theatrical production. It was called Everybody Comes to Rick’s.

Anyway, I finally satisfied my curiosity about the Moroccan city last week when it was one of the ports visited on a short cruise themed around ‘Moorish delights’. Casablanca  turns out to be a vast, bustling commercial hub, its stand-out “sight” being the massive, and massively impressive, Hassan II Mosque, wonderfully situated on a promontory jutting out into the Atlantic.

Another trip was to Tangier, with its colourful old town and markets. It’s a place rich in atmosphere and history, and has featured in various thrillers, including one of the Modesty Blaise stories. Of the two cities, I found more of interest in Tangier, though of the four Moroccan cities I’ve visited, Marrakech remains far and away my favourite.

There’s something fascinating about having the chance of a glimpse of a very different culture, and brief – and inevitably superficial - as my glimpses into Moroccan life have been, they might well surface in a short story one of these days.   

3 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Martin - Lucky you to have had the chance to see those places. I've wanted to do so myself for a long time. I'd be really interested to see how you handle them in a story, too. Thanks for sharing the 'photos.

Sarah said...

It looks beautiful Martin. Lucky you.

Nigel Bird said...

The colour in those photos are fabulous, especially when compared to the current grey of Dunbar.