Barefoot in the Djemaa el Fna

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One of the many performers in the Djemaa el Fna (market square in Marrakesh)  it was hard to photograph them without being hasseled for money but I was pretty happy with this hip shot.

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When I was a little girl my father had a friend that came to visit us at our cabin in the woods.  I remember she was very beautiful in a way that was completely new to me; she wasn’t pretty like my class mates who had the coolest clothes or glamorous like the movie stars who effortlessly moved about the screen.  It was more like the beauty of my Mother, more truthful but hers was new and unfamiliar.

I don’t remember what she looked like but I remember she could walk barefoot across glass.  In my mind that became the answer to her beauty and mystery, it also became a vivid image that I can always look back on.  The following fall I vaguely remember telling a teacher that when I grew up I wanted to be a woman that could walk on anything.

While we were in Morocco I had some strange dreams, most of which left me with more ideas than exact images, but one of the dreams included walking on glass and this woman who amazed me so much as a little girl.  After the Hammam we went to the Djemaa el Fna where we rather spontaneously decided to get some henna.  We did not however think about how long the henna would need to sit and/or how cold the air would become in the next half hour.  So as they finished the Berber deigns and the sun went down we realized we’d have to find a place to sit for a while and we’d need to find it without putting our shoes on.

Now, as a kid I was barefoot everywhere and as an adult I take pleasure in grass between my toes in the right places.  As a girl who went to school in the city and has seen a few too many people use the subway as a toilet wearing flip flops in a city makes me a tad uncomfortable (too thin soled and open).  However, traveling changes the rules even if you didn’t think you had many.  Before I knew it I was walking across glass, laughing with my Sister, and appreciating the Moroccan street cleaners.

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Back at the Riad, playing with my flash and the bright orange of my freshly washed feet.

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Our Riad, gorgeous.

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3 Responses to “Barefoot in the Djemaa el Fna”


  1. 1 Erin May 27, 2009 at 4:24 am

    I love the feet photographs–it’s the way taboo art school picture. But they are great!!!!
    …I know that Somerville ain’t no Morocco, but I have timed the sprinklers at the park next to my apartment, and I think that running in them will be in order(1:30 AM).
    Love it. Grass between your toes, a good friend, could anything be better?
    Can’t wait to see you!

  2. 2 Your Father June 1, 2009 at 11:38 pm

    Eliza Reid would be delighted to know she had such an effect upon you, Lucy. She was living in Seattle last I saw her, having survived serious head trauma and rebuilt her life from scratch. She’s passionate about Nonviolent Communication and helped to steer me into Marshall Rosenberg.

  3. 3 Laurie June 3, 2009 at 2:37 am

    Nice feet!! xo Mom


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