Travelling with Shibani

There really are no words to adequately describe the experience of travelling with Shibani – George.

We met George and Jack in Zagora – two Frenchmen travelling in Morocco since the beginning of October.  George is in a green Mercedes van and Jack on a motorbike.  We all spent the day at Chez Aziz / Garage Iriki having work done on vehicles.  George has been travelling regularly to Morocco since his first visit 35 years ago.  Jack has joined George on a number of trips – some with wives and children – for a few years.

George is a truly unique individual, with a very special way with people.  His gentle and humble nature, his sense of humour and a complete and utter love of life – ‘C’est par belle la vie’ is his morning greeting – together with his vast Moroccan experience, makes him a fascinating person to travel with.

Including Jack, the 3 of us have been swept along the incredible magic carpet ride that seems to accompany George.

By leaving everything in George’s capable hands, we have had a surreal few days:  first we crossed the piste from Zagora to Foum Zguid.  Each vehicle took a slightly different route, and we met up in the afternoon in Foum Zguid.  On the way, George had made a new friend, bought some carpets, and ended up with our next 2 days planned.

We have spent time – as friends – with a Berber family in Tasla.  Carefully treading some of the cultural intricacies, we have been taken around and shown the village, drunk tea, eaten homemade couscous and tagine, seen home-made carpets, stayed in a Berber home, bartered items for carpets, drunk tea with Nomads, and almost bought a live goat (we couldn’t agree a price).

As is the case, all too soon we parted ways – we went west towards the coast, and George and Jack headed north to Marrakesh on their way back to France.

We experienced and learned so much, and we hope that we will take the spirit of Shibani with us – not only on this adventure, but through our lives.

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6 Responses to Travelling with Shibani

  1. tuggy says:

    fantastic…you wont want to go any further you could spend another couple of months in morocco isn,t it a great place….
    ok enjoy…..

    • African GirlChild says:

      Tugs – in some ways we could stay here for ages … but the call of the South is getting louder 😉 Have to start making progress.

  2. Vic says:

    Oh, man, I hope we meet up with George some day.. Or someone like him.. Wonderful times.

    • African GirlChild says:

      Vic – “Shibani” is a word in Berber / Arabic which means old man, but denotes great respect for experience and wisdom. As you know, many African languages have their own similar word. The locals were the ones who started calling him Shibani. Just an amazing man.

  3. Georges "Chibani" says:

    I was too happy to make the acquaintance of these two travelers left to discover another world.
    I found their happy life and ready to discover things.

    During the few days we spent together, I was y to see you people curious to learn without fear differences in the world.

    Skip londonniene life in a tea house berbere is a breeze for them now ..

    They knew from the dream to reality and withdraw from life anything but a film that presents to his friends.
    There is not a doubt that their kindness and iintelligence life will open all doors.

    Bon voyage, we will not forget you.

    Take care of yourself.

    I will follow your journey on the Web until you find maybe one day.


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