Extra! Extra! Read All About It --
the Odyssey's in Morocco!
Wednesday News Report,
North Africa Bureau
15 September 1999
Marrakech, MOROCCO -- Odyssey World Trekkers Abeja, Kavitha, Jasmine and Monica arrived at 3:30pm on Air Afrique direct from Dakar, capital of Senegal, yesterday. Asked by taxi driver Mohammed their initial impressions of Morocco, they were enthusiastic. "It's very modern," said Kavitha. "The architecture is a blend of ancient and Art Deco. I like it."
While city officials did not meet them for a briefing, the trekkers understand that Casablanca, population 2.8 million, is Morocco's largest city and the heart of industry for this Islamic country, situated on the northwestern tip of Africa.
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Trekker Monica, 26, celebrated her birthday this morning at the Hotel Colbert in downtown Casablanca. "It's so wonderful, it makes me feel so special," she was quoted as saying, of the breakfast the other trekkers prepared for her. Trekkers Abeja and Jasmine visited the market to find the fruits, pastries, cheeses and breads for the breakfast, which Trekker Kavitha prepared. Trekker Kevin, recovering from a bout with malaria, was unable to join the group. Sources say the party was a success mirroring that of Monica's previous birthday, celebrated last year in coincidence with Mexican Independence Day.
Art Deco - a style of art and architecture from the early 20th century. Miami Beach, FL, is famous for its Art Deco buildings.
Lavish - extravagant or generous
Hospitality - friendly treatment of guests or strangers
The trekkers took the four-hour train to Marrakech, where they were met by Ali. Jasmine first met Ali in Bamako, Mali. Ali, his friend Farrakhan, and niece Sarah, 15, accompanied the group to the family home in the outlying suburb of Amerchich, Albadi. This evening a lavish feast of chicken and lemon and olives, with French fries and a salad of cucumber, tomatoes and lettuce was prepared by Fatima, eldest sister of Ali, and his cousin, also named Fatima.
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The group was joined by Kamara, Myriam (Ali's other sister) and her husband Boudouin for dinner. After a chocolate and vanilla birthday cake, the dancing continued until late in the evening. "It's the best birthday of my life," stated Monica, praising the legendary Moorish hospitality.
"The whole family is very, very happy to receive you all," said Sarah. Fatima continued, "we're pleased to become acquainted with your project. A big kiss, also, from Kamar."
The group will stay in Marrakech one week, then visit the Moroccan cultural center Fès. Afterward, they will visit the capital city Rabat, then Mčknes and Tangiers.
reporting from Morocco
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Kavitha - Do You Believe in God? Do You Believe in Miracles?
Abeja - We're in Casablanca!
Jasmine - Dinner for Twelve
Monica - Extra! Extra! Lisez tout sur l'Odyssey au Maroc!
Making a Difference - Abeja gets M.A.D. -- She's Making a Difference
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