Morocco Journal 2017 

by Emily Millichip

I am sitting on a blue roof terrace in the base of the Rif mountains in Morocco. Chefchaouen is no longer a secret, but is as beautiful as ever. I have just had sex with a beautiful blue-eyed alien, eaten an apple, and am about to pour a rum. The call to prayer has just started reminding me that two of those things are sins. Good.

All of the cells in my body have been active and alert for months now.
Straining away from one state towards another, straining towards people, straining towards a person. Straining and straining towards that person. I can feel my body relaxing as these mountains take over and the immensity of this land reminds me that I am supposed to feel small, that I am supposed to mean nothing. But I don’t feel small, I feel fucking massive, like I could swallow these mountains up or move them with my breath.

He is out wandering, and what even is he? He is a galaxy, an alien, smoke blowing in the wind, a constantly shifting dance. He is golden and blue and completely infuriating. And what am I? A shapeshifter, a mountain, a drunk, a liar, a witch. And maybe a queen.

What do I love? I love daydreaming, I love drinking, I love cracking someone’s brain open and pouring myself in there. I love anything that involves weaving magic. I love being in a strange country where they don’t give a shit about dangerous driving, I love drink driving, not wearing a seatbelt, speeding, hairpin bends and mountain roads, flying through nightscapes and landscapes and dreamscapes. Look how fucking fast we were going when we died.

As we drove North I saw a pink neon telephone receiver, lit up against a pink square building, with a pink tiled balcony, against lilac and grey sunset clouds. Then those clouds held giant palm fronds, then they sat on the mountains. The olive trees and the dust made everything silvery-grey apart from the odd piece of art deco architecture. A white and turquoise bus stop, an ice-cream coloured resort complex promising to take you on a holiday to… nowhere.

Soon we are headed South to the Vallée des Roses, where we have already missed the night harvest of millions of pink petals. We will be just in time for the festival, where we will walk amongst glinting silver mirrors, drink bright green avocado milkshakes and breathe in Damask rose.

But for now we will keep winding our way up these mountains. We will speed around dark hairpin bend after dark hairpin bend, until we turn one more bend and suddenly a valley of golden lights will dance in front of our eyes along with ‘oooh baby do you know what life’s worth, oooh heaven is a place on earth’ blasting out of the radio. Fucking hell. Belinda Carlisle is on this trip too. Along with the beautiful blue-eyed alien sitting next to me, and all of the past, present and imagined versions of us. And I will stare out of the window at the golden lights and the white moon and think, THANK FUCK. Thank fuck.

text © Emily Millichip

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