How lovely is this: a nice, sunny, relaxing vacation perfectly combined with.. Ramadan. Welcome to the Islamic world, which seems to take a little step up the Islamic ladder during the Ramadan period. Bye bye holding hands, au revoir kisses, see you later open lesbian relationship.
First let’s set one thing straight: everybody is free to believe whatever he/she/x chooses to believe and we’ll always respect different religions and the values people commit to. We’re a guest in Morocco and will therefore try to act in accordance with the local standards. We’ll not wear a bikini on the street, we’ll try to avoid looking men directly in the eyes (which is actually really difficult) and for the term of our vacation we’re “just” good friends.
With the right mindset, we entered a small restaurant during one of our first days in Morocco. Table for two please! Helen sincerely hoped nobody saw the gentle strike over Nadines shoulder as they took their places. Oeps. Not much later, we were enjoying our conversation. The subject of our conversation doesn’t really matter (and honestly, we’ve already forgotten what it was about), important was that Nadine admitted that Helen was right! Yeah, this usually calls for a celebration, consisting of one (or multiple) kisses. Nadine left Helens cheek hanging in mid air though.. Oeps #2.
Celebration also calls for a drink. Helen grabbed Nadines glass, for her own glass was already empty. Makes sense, right? Oeps #3.
It was considered a miracle, but we actually managed to act responsibly during the remaining part of our restaurant visit and our disguise remained intact. Up to the moment the bill arrived, that is. With the bill came the question whether we wanted to go Dutch. Normally we start laughing when we hear such a question, knowing all amounts will come from one shared account. Habits are difficult to leave behind (even when it’s temporary) and both of us started smiling broadly. The moment we realised this, our hands went before our mouths and we looked at each other in slight panic. “no problem” Nadine said, ” I’ll take this bill, you can take the next one”. Release breath: Phoeehhh. Our disguise was not lost yet and we were still undercover lesbians (that term does have a ring to it, doesn’t it?). Spoiler alert: we would try another attempt at losing our disguise soon.
We were getting ready to leave the restaurant, when a conversation with some locals initiated. We tried to be careful, as “just” friends we obviously didn’t know everything about each other. Spontaneously Helen had no idea any more what Nadines job was and responded with: something with boats. Nadine started talking very enthusiastically about the new sauna in Helens garden. When she was asked how she knew that, her response became inaudible for normal human beings. Time to say goodbye!
We decided to head for our hotel. While walking, Helen put her arm around Nadine (Oeps#4). Okay, we increased our speed and desperately looked forward to the safety of our hotel room.
Once we were in the hotel, we could hear the start of the evening prayer. The next couple of hours, this would be our background sound. We started our own evening ritual: moving the beds towards each other (guess what our morning ritual was). Once more we checked the lock on our room door and after that, we felt it was time to take our disguise off. Tomorrow we’ll go undercover again and we will try even harder to be “just” friends!
Helen and Nadine