Tuesday 21st October – The Prophet says cats are good.

This is a secret window for the ladies. They didn’t used to be able to just hang out a window or even open a door unless they knew who it was so a window like this allowed the women to sit unseen and observe the days comings and goings. From the outside its just a tiny slit but from the inside you can view almost the whole width. They also had some semi circular like barrels above doorways so the lady of the house could look down holes in the barrel and see who was at the door which saved her going down to the bottom story.

This is our breakfast at Steve’s Riad. It’s an incredible breakfast all Lai’s on just for us and I never thought I’d ever say this but the fresh yoghurt was pretty amazing. That’s in the glass and looks like milk.

While I did my cooking class today Gilbert visited an optometrist the local guy Mohammid recommended and Gilbert said it was possibly more modern than ours back home. He ordered a pair of graduated lenses which cost around NZ$200 and will be ready in a couple of days time. He caught a taxi into Nouvelle Village or new town and said it was just pretty up market shops. Back here and he wandered around exploring side alleys and after picking me up at the Cafe after the cooking class he took me to show me what he found.

These are quite healthy specimens compared to some we’ve seen but there are cats everywhere. Hundreds of them. Most are roaming wild, looking pretty mangey and I’m careful not to come into contact with them. Most Europeans look at them and wish they could have a better life but I think this works pretty good. Apparently Mohammad the prophet said cats are good and clean but dogs are not, so no one here keeps a dog. Rats and mice clean up the scraps after the market and the cats roam free cleaning up the rats and mice. This seems to me the best kind of relationship where if left alone there is a natural balance here in the Medina. The streets are relatively clean…in a Moroccan kind of way.

When I compare that with the streets of Nice where the streets are littered with dog faeces and rubbish. The dog is almost a useless animal. It needs someone to provide its food needs and can do nothing but provide friendship, I guess security also and generally makes a nuisance of itself barking and leaving shit all over the paths. Steve said he dreads the day when it becomes fashionable to have a dog as a pet and he hopes The Prophets guidelines are adhered to for ever! Don’t get me wrong because I love cats and dogs but here in this environment where everyone is packed into tiny areas like sardines this works well.

Sent from my iPad

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