Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Memories of Tangier Part 1

If you see her, say hello, she might be in Tangier
- Bob Dylan - from 'Blood on the Tracks'

Ahhh, Tangier.  Ruled, shaped and formed by the Phoenicians,  Romans, Portuguese, Arabs, English and Spanish. Painted by Matisse and Delacroix. Home to eccentric British Ex Pats straight after the war. Made culturally hip and artistically fascinating by writers such as Burroughs, Kerouac and Bowles, with frequent visits from Tennessee Williams. All this international flavor and yet, at sunset when the calls to prayer begin, it couldn't be anywhere but Africa.

I had the extraordinary privilege of staying at one of Tangier's most beautiful properties on the 'Old Mountain'. Acres and acres of rambling gardens spread across the cliff, a bountiful pomegranate tree here, a lavender hedge there, an orchard elsewhere, and always a wondrous view over the Straits of Gibraltar. For someone who lives in the concrete jungle and yearns for green and silence, it couldn't have been more perfect.

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