Seasick on the Strait of Gibraltar.

Anchovies aside, our two-and-a-half days in Spain had been on-the-whole lovely. But we weren’t in Spain as our primary destination: Sevilla was a port of departure for a trip to Northern Morocco.

The Strait of Gibraltar from our bus ride through the mountains!

The Strait of Gibraltar from our bus ride through the mountains!

I was beside myself. Having traveled rather extensively in East and West Africa, i was eager to dig my heels into some Northern Africa territory. Obviously, this was to be a light flavoring of even what all of Morocco has to share and show, but i was hankering for my camel ride and stroll through the fairytale blue streets of Chefchouen.

I was not hankering for usurping my lunch over the bow of our ferry. Even without anchovies, that was not a sight anyone wanted to see.

My motion sickness is embarrassingly debilitating. I can’t sick in the backseat of a car bound for the grocery store without turning green, much less handle choppy waves and gusting winds over the Mediterranean sea. But the worst part wasn’t trying to suck down salt air between waves. It was trying to keep my too-tiny lungs from wheezing in too much secondhand cigarette smoke.

It’s no false stereotype: at least a dozen people stood on the deck puffing on a pack and a half the whole ride over. I’ve been struggling in Europe with the smoking levels everywhere i go, but this was the absolute worst. No consideration for anyone else, the clusters of people blew their excess toxins right into my already-ill face. Nevermind my obnoxiously red inhaler clutched in my greening fingers. Had i not been feeling like my stomach had been replaced with a heavy-load washing machine, i might have assumed soapbox mode and asked for a little awareness of our little-lung neighbors.

After an hour that lasted an asthma-ridden lifetime, we chugged into the Tangiers harbor. The feral cats who inhabited the luggage terminal were my fast friends, and a few mews later i was feeling like a new woman. It’s the simple pleasures, right?

First cat sighting in Morocco!

First cat sighting in Morocco!

Fast friends.

Fast friends.

Another (blessedly smoke-free) bus ride later, we were in our swanky Tétouan hotel where plates of fresher vegetables than i’d seen in months were on the table before us. Morocco was looking seriously good, if for the tomatoes and cucumbers alone.

And my hotel bed was looking even better. So thankful for fresh air and greens not of the seasick-variety, i was for bed.

current jam: ‘holy ground’ taylor swift.

best thing: my dad comes tomorrow!

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