Do a hit of the local hash in my room, and I'm feeling so good I go up on the roof where they hang out the washing and have the water cisterns. Check out the Medina as dusk falls. Can hear the priest guy wailing in the mosque, hidden away in the broken skyline of crazy roofs and slow movin' palms. Also the deceptively monotonous music of the tamboura, a fav of the emigres from the eastern desert, some from as far away as Somalia. It's wafting, like a distant radio signal... sand in the moist wind.
Swore I would smoke no weed, no hash again, screw my lungs, my head... but this sort of place, you can't refuse the food of the natives. Was in the Cafe Damascus, sipping on a mint tea, watching the rowdy crowds move through the Zoco after the soccer match when this little guy in a sports jacket sits down beside me, smiles, starts grunting. This isn't a case of no ESL or French or Spanish -- he's had his tongue chopped, so alls he can do is grunt and hiss. It's kinda funny, but I don't laugh as I'm a polite guy. Orders a mint for himself, insists on paying the waiter for mine too. Has to be an agenda here and there is. When he finishes his rank Maroc ciggie, he pulls out this paperback, nudges me, opens it below the table like it's porno or something. Is actually a war novel done like a comic book. Got a thin wedge of Riff hash in there. Holds up four fingers, notice his thumb is stumped at the knuckle. Holy rustin' rebar... for a hustler, this man has got his share of probs.
I decline with a wave but this guy is pretty insistent. Got the crazy glint in those brown eyes. So I give him five bucks or five dirham, whatever's in my jeans. He's all smiles, splits right away. Watch him talk with some merchant wearing shades and a striped jalaba, far side of the Zoco, then disappear.
Now I'm looking at the deep twilight sea. Some fishermen in an open boat out there on the reefs, couple of big lamps slung low above the water. Guess this is how they get the fish. Um, dirty politics. Tide is low enough that you can see the shapes and the channel that leads to the port. Built on a madreporic shelf which extends way out there. Can't see the islands from here but they're just reefs with sand. Where's my box? My guitar? Feel like there's a tune coming outta the air. But of course I left it behind in L.A. too.
Hear something, look over my shoulder. A woman wearing a veil, pulling the laundry from the line. I'm thinking it's Naomi my co-star, still in costume... but no, it's an employee of the Hotel. Apparently. She sees me looking, is smiling behind that veil. Makes me wonder if she put it on because she knew I was up here... an unbeliever. She's talking to me and of course I don't know what's she's saying... this pretty girl in a veil. Maybe she wants me to help her.
I smile, turn back to the sea, watch the night come down... the stars and the crescent moon with its black umbra. Feelin good, but no way am I gonna get my throat slit over some local laundry.