So, apparently this trip is meant to be a solo project, but I think I haven’t spent more than five minutes alone since I left for Morocco. And it just so happens that I have met most of my companions while taking transport. From the girl on the plane who spent 15 minutes negotiating with the taxi driver to get a good price to go to the city … to the guy I met at the train station who made sure I arrived safely, took me for a scooter ride, gave me advice about filming and invited me for lunch – it’s amazing who you can meet in the streets and on transport.
I guess the structure and interactions of transport are something that go hand in hand. There is transport where everything is organised with maps and clean vehicles, places to validate your ticket, places to sit or to stand – you can get buy without needing help or without needing to enter anyone else’s personal space. In Casablanca, I would say the Tramway is like this. So I thought the Tramway would always be quiet, but then I noticed a couple of animated conversations between strangers (I guess that’s just the Moroccan way). Then there are other modes of transport, which involve necessary contact with others as your are jammed into sharing seats with them. I feel very much like I’m in a communal cocoon in the Grand Taxis which are Mercedes Benz cars that are built like tanks and built to last (and possibly built to carry six passengers and the driver). You can usually start a conversation in the taxi with a need for guidance or a common complaint in such a vehicle. While being in a Grand Taxi I learnt the art of making signals with your arms to indicate to passing drivers where you want to go. This is very handy when no one can understand my pronunciation.
So it seems like it is easy for me to meet people and to experience what it is like to use transport at the same time. However, this does not translate into people wanting to be interviewed in front of a camera. I think this is going to be my biggest challenge but I’m guessing once the Moroccans start talking nothing will stop them 🙂