3:00pm: It is October 1st, 2012. We have arrived in Morocco.
8:00pm: A man with a bike is waiting for us at the hotel. Who is he, we ask? No one knows, but we trust him to take us where we need to go. We follow him like sheep, mimicking his every move and turn until he drops us safely at the restaurant. We walk in and see only two other groups, clearly tourists. We sit down at a long table, very hungry.
8:33pm: We attempt to order something off of the menu. Wanting to try a tagine, I ask, “Does this come with rice?” The man taking our order looks at me with puzzled eyes and shrugs his shoulders. “Okay, tamam,” I say hastily in response—I’ll just wait and see if what I ordered comes with rice. Mike had already ordered once, but the man comes back around to take his order for a second time. “I’ve already ordered,” Mike slowly tries to tell the man. He doesn’t understand, so we wave him off, hoping that Mike (who gave up eating some meals to save money in Turkey) doesn’t go hungry.
9:08pm: Our soups and salads finally come out. The vegetable soup is pure broth, but we are ravenous. What salad did Duncan get? We’ll never know. Christina just got one avocado as her “salad”—tamam, maybe it’s something they do in Morocco. Nibbling at the bread and eating the olives on the table, we are getting antsy. After traveling all day we are now feeling the jetlag. Our bodies are telling us it is midnight in Turkey—well past all of our early bed times.
9:57pm: Our food finally arrives. Mike gets fed, don’t worry. It is, however, some interesting looking sausage skewers that don’t seem too appetizing. My tagine does not come with rice.
10:43pm: We are ready to go. We bid adieu to Mark and Meredith who are sitting at another table with the director of our program in Fez. As we’re walking out the door we hear, “Wait! Someone is coming for you!” We pivot, and make our way back to the table. We slump into our seats, and heads go on the table. I hear whimpering from the other end of the table—someone is on the verge of tears. Katrina, to my right, is laughing at nothing—we’ve all gone loopy.
10:59pm: Our bodies think it’s 2am, yet we’re still sitting at “dinner”. We see a man waiting outside of the restaurant, this time sans bike. We assume he is here to guide us to our hotel, so we follow him gratefully, more than ready to be in our beds. We get back to the hotel, mumble ‘thank you,’ and stumble to our rooms.
11:11pm: After getting ready at lightning speed, we are ready for bed. Without any of the pillow talk that we had come to love on excursion, our heads hit the pillows and we immediately fall asleep.
5:00am: An alarm goes off. I open my eyes and realize it is still pitch black out. Confused, we realize that our clocks are still on Istanbul time. After shutting it off and resetting it, we fall back asleep, grateful that we get a few more hours of sleep after such a long day.