Listen to Julie Henning’s report featured on the NPR.ORG Podcast site, “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer” Check out this episode! Marrakesh is one of the busiest cities in Morocco. Located in North Africa, the country embodies a marriage of old-world traditions and modern-day lifestyle in a pulsing chaos of people, animals, and vehicles all intertwining in a culture uniquely its own. Earlier this month Ms. Henning took her third-grade daughter on a one-week trip to Marrakesh. They stayed with their multi-cultural friends Amanda and Youssef Moutakki (http://marocmama.com/) in their third-floor apartment just one mile from the international airport. Visiting both the popular tourist destinations, staying with “the locals” gave Henning an inside glimpse into the ways of the Moroccan culture. Join Ms. Henning she visits the medina, the Arabic word for the fortified “old world” part of the City.
She meets snake charmers, musicians, food vendors and has henna tattoos emblazoned on their hands. The journey includes a visit to the hamam, the traditional Moroccan bathhouse and into the High Atlas Mountains for lunch in the Berber village of Ourika. Henning’s daughter played soccer with neighborhood children and posed for a souvenir photo while a monkey sat on her head. Culinary excursions included cotton candy wrapped around a bamboo twig and shared nightly meals cooked on the stove in an earthenware clay pot called a tajine. Ms. Henning also accompanies her friend, Amanda, to the Center for Language and Culture for twice weekly language classes with the intent of becoming a fluent speaker of Moroccan Arabic.