Casablanca was by far the most intense and least touristy city which we visited; a fair number of people spoke some English (and we got by the rest of the time on our group of friends’ collective French and Arabic abilities), and there were some tourist attractions to check out, but for the most part I felt like I had been dropped into the middle of everyday Moroccan life, probably particularly since it was Ramadan. Also, I’m a complete broken record, but it was hot there – we’re talking 110 degrees in the shade hot. I also don’t think I had a real understanding of the word “desert” before we actually got out to Marrakech and stood in the dust and sand and blazing heat in the middle of Jemaa al-F’na square, which reaffirmed my love for trees and nice, temperate climates where 110 degrees is not something that happens in real life. Which is not to say that I didn’t enjoy Morocco – I’m very glad to have been there, to get a little window into what life is like in North Africa. But it also made me even happier to come home.