Location: Marrakech, Morocco

We woke up at 5:45 this morning, way too early for everyone, considering we had had to move the boat from one docked position to another at midnight. We could have gotten an extra hour of sleep, but Morocco forgot to tell us that they got rid of Daylight Savings Time, so we played word games while waiting for the vans to pick us up. Unfortunately for us, it was raining while we waited and proceeded to rain for the rest of the day. Our two-hour van ride to Marrakech consisted of snacking and making up the hours of lost sleep. The tour guide showed us the four sections of the city, including a beautiful Bahia Palace, then left us to our own devices in the market. Each stall was filled with products of wood, metal, or leather; whatever you were looking to find, you could find it.

It’s not every day you get a free massage on the streets. It started with a tea-buying excursion and a few nice gentlemen trying to get us to test their lotion products. We got some enjoyable hand massages and practiced our haggling skills to buy some fun gifts and souvenirs. The streets of the market in Marrakech were largely covered by planking and sheet metal, so the rain was hardly noticeable as we went along our way.

After we were worn out from shopping, we returned to the restaurant for super creamy hot cocoa and relaxing. For dinner, most of us ordered tajine, a delicious Moroccan dish, and for dessert, creme brulee or chocolate mousse. The long day was followed by another long car ride to our overnight accommodations. Everyone proceeded to their yurts and started winding down. This was the first time since starting the semester that people have been able to take a hot water shower, and almost everyone took advantage of it. After the warm shower, people stayed warm by piling the blankets on their beds and burrito-ing. It was a warm end to a rainy day.

To my family: Thank you for all the stuff you have done to help me while Ive been gone, especially with college applications. Happy Birthday to Jamie and Amanda; I hope you guys do something fun to celebrate! Ill be home before you know it. Love you guys!

Pictured: Tait, CJ, and Ev exploring the market; Claire, Jackie, and Sydney having some treats during a break in the tour; Amanda, Smash, and Amy enjoying some local mint tea before dinner; a view of one of the intricate ceilings in the Bahia palace; and a view of one of the mosques in Marrakech.