Bookmark and Share



1. Crazy Italian dream

2. Hustlers invite you for tea

3. Peaceful walk between the creeks


Open LookLex Encyclopaedia

Open the online Arabic language course

Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | Practicalities

Hustlers invite you for tea

Asni, Morocco

We were quite new to Morocco back then, in 1990, when we arrived in Asni. To us everything appeared all right, but when I some years later read in the Rough Guide about Asni-hustlers, I realized that we had been the victims of a standard performance.
In one of the villages 15-20 minutes before Asni, three men came on the bus which we were travelling in from Marrakech. By accident they sat down close to the three of us — somehow (we didn't understand much of Berber language of course) other passengers moved so that they could come as close as possible. We thought they just loved foreigners.
Instead of going to Imlil with a rented taxi, which was our initial plan, the three men invited us home for tea. Politeness forced us to say yes, and that was the beginning of their 5 hours adoption. After tea, dinner followed, and then one of the guys (the one to the right on the picture) told us about his profession: He travelled in the mountains where he traded clothes and other useful products with handmade silver jewellery. —"Would we like to see the silver products?" he asked. —"Yeah, well, OK" we answered.
One hour later we were sitting on the bus back to Marrakech, each of us with a silver bracelet. According to normal handmade silver prices in Morocco, we paid double the real price. But it wasn't handmade. It wasn't even silver, only pewter.

By Tore Kjeilen