To elope from reality!
To never think of the past!
To unlive the future!
This immature soul
Clinging between passion and dream
Wants to be a globe-trotter
Like the friendly ghost, Casper
In the axis of metamorphic life!
Like a friendly ghost haunting my dream of travelling Africa on road, I started off with $80, my backpack and my skateboard.
The idea of wayfaring was not all smooth, but the undying euphoria was enough to overcome the entropy of life. I didn’t have too many plans regarding the unsettled life I was stepping into…but I have a big dream garnished with wanderlust.
There was no dearth of thirst of knowing the unknown, of seeing the unseen!!! And I was ready to not only nurture with my dream but to fulfil it with whatever resources I had at the time of starting my journey alone.
It was 29th January 2015 I left my hometown and started my trip. I hitch-hiked, skated, and walked through Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Mali, Cote d’ Ivoire; cycling through Ghana, Togo and Benin I faced major visa issues in Nigeria and Chad. Then I decided to retreat back to Ethiopia and continuing to Djibouti, Somaliland, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania. After visiting the island of Zanzibar, I skated my way towards Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Botswana.
The rejection of visas didn’t, however, stop me to obtain an entry visa for South Africa, which indeed is a notorious challenge for a Moroccan to get in there, nevertheless, I managed it!!
In my 3 years’ trip, besides travelling 22 countries, I made some priceless human connections on Earth; the hospitality, the humane treatment I received from the African inhabitants framed my uncertain road trip with stability. The stability which I might never have received, had I settled with a job, a family, investing in property. In order to meet up with resources, I had tried being a jack of all trades switching into various part-time jobs in different places.
In Senegal, I had worked as a fisherman and a tour guide, in Mali as a mechanic, in Côte d’Ivoire I sold shoes. I was not ready to take a chance to live a boring life, rather I tried engaging myself in a variety of manual work only to sponsor a journey of my dream- The African Dream.
Not for a slightest of a moment, I felt trapped in any hard-rush schedule with stress to complete my trip in a hurry. Whatever distance I was covering towards my dream trip, I was happy to believe that I’m living the present.
In my journey, I had met many solo travellers, at one time we travelled together, at other time we might have separated due to their different encounter plans.
But the vibes of positive juvenile spirit, the vibrant energy agglomerated towards quenching the wanderlust. The diversity of a single landmass I was experiencing had left me in awe. The African wildlife, cultures and the unique welcome of different ethnic tribes compensated my homesickness at times.
The black magic of Benin; the generosity of Djibouti; the striking differences of Ethiopia from other places; the peace of Somaliland; the amazing wildlife of Tanzania and Kenya; the breathtaking landscapes of Malawi, Uganda and Rwanda; the extrovert nature of Zimbabwean people; the tranquility of Botswana and Namibia …and the list goes on.
During my encounters, many obstacles interrupted my journey. At one time I got stuck in a desert for 5 days with no food and water; at other time I had mistakenly slept in a national park full of wild animals but what an irony even they abandoned me ; sometimes my family has come to visit me and it was very difficult to leave them and move on..but the determination of #MARAJ3INCH inspired me; at places I had stayed with the African tribes listening to their stories, teaching them… in return, they have given me some gifts of their culture; once I had been at the centre of black magic in a place of weird happenings but somehow I managed to escape from Benin; I received information and help from inhabitants all around and sometimes while leaving them, I gave them some of my travel gifts; I had even been in jail for a day due to my illegal encounter at some place and much more crazy travel stories awaiting !!!
Presently I am in Morocco,…as a public figure, an adventurer, a photographer, a skateboarder, a filmmaker and above all am living on my dreams, trusting my instincts and responding to my interpersonal gut.
Today I host photo exhibitions that feature the breathtaking travel stories, my travel itinerary “The African Dream” portrays my experiences and anecdotes of my 3 years’ journey.