Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Blue Morocco Morning.

The raucous crowing of a rooster dragged me from sleep straight into a murky soup of brain-fog, complete with gritty eyes and a stale mouth. The sky was a brilliant, clear blue in the way that only a desert sky can be but I knew nothing of it with my head still stuck under the blankets. Slowly I began to remember the night before, where I was, who I was, but it didn’t all come easily or quickly. The ache in my legs and my back started to register as they recovered from the anaesthetic of sleep. They sent short, sharp impulses to my brain prompting the recollection of the previous day’s camel ride deep into the desert, and the mental fog began to clear a bit and give way to orientation. The village, the hut I’d been given a bed in, the mutton stew ….. it all started to fit together, but not yet in a good way and I wasn’t ready to put my head out from under the blankets.

I started to count my testicles just to be sure - you never know - but half way through Kevin flung open the door and I lost track of where I’d got to and had to start over again. His loud, annoying Australian accent that I thought I’d got used to told me it was morning and we were going to be moving out on the camels. I swung my legs off the bed when he’d gone and stayed sitting there a while, the blanket still over my head, and I could feel the frigid air of the early morning travel up from the floor and it felt cold on my thighs.

Self-discipline and a scant awareness of reality helped by Kevin’s impatient nagging propelled me under the shower that stuck out of the rear wall of the hut. The morning was empty apart from the misty, faraway hills and the freezing cold water that cascaded down over me from the tank on the roof.

Standing there being flushed back to life was a resurrection experience. There was nothing but me and the morning, the water and the sky, a very early, blue Moroccan morning, with wisps of apricot-coloured cloud dragging off towards the hills. There was no concession to modesty in the form of walls around the shower, but there was no need. Just me and the barely wakening world; stunted, isolated trees and damp, brown earth leading everywhere, just one enormous cosmic shower cubicle

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