Saturday, October 12, 2013

It's About Time

2013 10 11
Marina Bouregreg, Sale, Morocco

Every French Designed Capital City has a Champs Elysee Clone:
a beautiful wide boulevard, palm lined flanked with
shops and cafes

For our first five days in Morocco our clocks and watches were an hour out of sync with the rest of Morocco.  This was not our fault. I blame it on the arrogance of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates.  Here is how it came upon us:

Ramadan, a period of special religious observance in the Mohammedan religion, loosely akin to Christians' Lent, requires that the faithful fast during daylight hours.  No food, no water.  This year Ramadan, which is a moveable observance, fell in the dead heat of summer.  

King of Morocco, King Mohammed VI, and his advisors knew the heavy toll that would be exacted from the population during Ramadan.  The King, Mohammed V, did what he could to alleviate suffering.
He suspended Daylight Savings Time in the Kingdom for the duration of Ramadan.  All during Ramadan the people could maintain strict observance during a working day that held one hour less daylight than would otherwise be the case.  It shortened the time his subjects need endure the privation of Ramadan.

A pretty decent act.  
One of the Loyal Subjects.  Child of the Sale Souk
She saw me taking pictures with my tablet and was curious.
I took one of her and she squealed with delight when she saw it.

However Morocco is an economy that needs the benefits normally attributed to Daylight Savings Time.  Ramadan being over, King Mohammed then extended DST to include the month of October.  Seems reasonable enough but...

The Loyal Subject lives with her parents, sister and brother
in these quarters, third door on the left.
We cruisers all rely on our computers and their automatic time and date functions to keep track of where we are and what time it is.  Well our computer programs, apple and microsoft and google all got. and still get, the time wrong in Morocco.  Every computer on board every boat is an hour out.  And will be until the end of October.

At first there were comical coincidences that masked our error and lulled us into the belief that there was no problem.  We caught the train to Casa at the time the schedule said.  Or so we thought.  Trains to Casa run every hour so we were actually catching the 0700 train when we thought we were catching the 0800.  

This explains the somewhat exasperated look on the conductor's face when he checked our tickets.  Tickets are issues for a specific train, denominated by time of departure and we were unwittingly on the wrong train.  Polite to a fault the Moroccan officials realized there was room enough on the train and said nothing to the idiot tourists who got on the wrong train.  

We missed trains, showed up early for doctor's appointments and were generally irresponsible until we figured it out.  Than we all had a good laugh.  

You Know You are Morocco 'Cause of All the
Big Golden Ms.
McDonalds ad on the new tram the M bracketing
a Moroccan woman in traditional dress 

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