Three days before we planned to go on a trip to Ifrane (about one hour drive from Fez). On Friday (Feb. 18th) at 9 AM I met with Yassine and we went to Driss’ place. We (actually Driss) drove to Simohamed’s (known as ElHamzaoui) place, and lastly Otman with his guitar. We were well-equipped for a journey in the snow: buta (gas), tagine, meat, vegetables, a large carpet, cameras, and the guitar. So five of us headed to Ifrane. This was our first trip with Driss’ new car, knowing that he is a brand new driver (yet he approved to be a very professional one).
Loud music, dancing and pictures/ videos, this was the atmosphere in the car while on our way to spend a day in the snow. We stopped in Emmouzar to have breakfast: tea, coffee, milk and mlawi. Then we resumed our way. We were stopped by the police in the entrance of Ifrane for a regular check. Ifrane was filled with snow. So beautiful.
At last, we are playing with snow, a snowballs fight. A very stunning nature, all covered with very white snow, mountains, trees, and rocks. Everyone made his camera ready and started taking lots of pictures: jumping, throwing snowballs, being crazy, and also filming interviews with ElHamzaoui who acted as a Saudi coming to Morocco, Driss as his English translator, Otman as the interviews’ commentator, Yassine the saudi’s bodyguard and myself as the cameraman. We spent about an hour there to continue our day in Mishlifen.
Mishlifen is about 20 kms from Ifrane. It was, literally, all covered with snow. We enjoyed skiing from up the hill. Again, lots of pictures (well, this is a day that should be well-documented, you know!). After discovering the place more, we took our kitchen stuff and cleaned (with clean snow) vegetables, ElHamzaoui and Driss were the main cooks. The tagine, however, took more hours cooking than they expected so we had lunch at 5 PM!! It smelled very delicious (and also tasted). While waiting for the supposedly lunch, we (of course took pictures) played the guitar, composed our own songs (which were basically snow and tagine-centered). After enjoying the tagine, we cleaned the place and got ready to go.
In the end of the day, we were all freezing cold (for we got wet). We difficultly made our way back to where the car was stationed. Each one of us was doing something to get his body warm. Soon after, we got into the car, and to our surprise (or shock) the car did not start (apparently it was freezing too). The four of us were pushing the car (while Driss directing it and doing his best to start it), but no satisfactory result. Someone (for whom we asked help) made an attempt, but he just made things worse; he got the car into deep snow, and all of us again were trying to take it back to the road. Someone else stopped to help us do something about the car. After many attempts “it is moving.” We were all like YEY!!! That was around 6 PM, it was getting dark.
It was getting darker and darker, and the car’s battery getting lower and lower. After making it back to Ifrane, Emmouar, the car’s lights got off, oh ow!! Importantly, Driss (with his assistant ElHamzaoui) managed to drive without lights (in the dark) and luckily it was a full-moon night, sometimes depending on other cars’ lights. Yassine, Otman and I in the back were all focusing on the road, as if watching a film. We were not freaked out, still we did not want to die! But we all had trust in Driss’ abilities. We were praying not to be stopped by the police for a check, otherwise we will have problems and the car might not move again. We were stopped once though, but the policeman understood the situation.
When we almost arrived to the airport of Fez (which is about 15 kms to Fez) the car stopped, and it had no lights, this was dangerous but still!!! We managed to push it to a nearby café. Driss called a mechanic who is a friend of his. He came and we took the car to the garage and got a taxi back home.
Probably while reading the last three paragraphs you got the impression that we were upset or the like, not at all! We were still singing, taking pictures, and enjoying our experience, and congratulating Driss for his professional driving. I am writing about this journey on my blog because it was a special and a great one!