Essaouira - Beautiful Encounters

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After a short stay in Marrakech staying at the lovely Riad Jardin Secret, I made my way to the seaside town of Essaouira.  Being from San Diego I think I always need to be near the water.  Majestic Disorder was also in Essaouira and had left Marrakech the day before to go there.  I didn’t know it when I had booked my time there but Essaouira had one of it’s biggest events, The Gnawa Music Festival, going on.  As soon as I arrived to my Airbnb I messaged Kelley, knowing that she probably didn’t have wifi and chances are I wouldn’t have wifi by the time she responded.  I ventured out into the old medina, where I was staying, and as I walked through I noticed an immediate difference between Marrakech and more of a similarity to the Greek Islands with its white buildings and blue accents. 

The streets were filled with people from all different cultures and as I walked I would stumble upon groups of people gathered together and performing music.  Most of these people to me looked like the true nomads, sitting or resting on their large backpacks huddled together and playing music.  As I weaved my way through the exterior of the medina and a narrow alley against the medina’s high stone wall I finally reached the beach.  The beach was very close to where the festival was going on and filled with people, especially as it was nearing sunset.

As I walked away from the beach I recognized Kelley with a large group of people and we laughed about what a coincidence it was running into each other.  In Marrakech she had told me about her friend and Casablanca based designer, Amine Bendriouich, and the hopes of being able to meet with him in Essaouira as well.  Moments before I ran into her she had run into him in the medina as he was doing a photo shoot for his new designs.  After being on the beach for a bit, Amine invited us to go along with him to the other location.  Without any hesitation Kelley and I agreed and we were off practically running through the medina.  The light was starting to fade and as a photographer I understand the importance of the last light of day during a shoot.  We arrived to a beautiful guesthouse full of designers, musicians, other creatives and Amine’s designs laid out everywhere, basically my dream situation come to life. 

When the group finished shooting at the beach we all went up to the rooftop to shoot a few more looks.  The air was windy and the light was perfect as it was just starting to set and casting a glow over the city. 

There was so many of us on the rooftop the Italian photographer, Luca, had us all kneel down because we were casting shadows on the model he was shooting.  I don’t think I’ll ever forget that moment:  kneeling down on a rooftop in Essaouira with an amazing group of people and the wind swirling all around us as the sun was starting to set.  Fellow Majestic Disorder Editor-in-Chief, Shaun, was also kneeling down and shooting as he captured behind the scenes photos of the shoot in progress so I asked him to take a quick photo of Kelley and I.  As you can see we are all windswept and completely and utterly happy.

As the last few shots were being taken, Kelley and I sat on the floor and spoke about travel and friendships.  The greatest reward of traveling is meeting like-minded individuals along the way and speaking about the mutual great love of travel.  I’m happy to say I think that Majestic Disorder and I are connected for life and I’m looking forward to more adventures with them in the future!

To read more of our Essaouira adventure and our “inshallah moment” be sure to purchase Issue 7 of Majestic Disorder HERE.  Yours truly is in there as a part of their travel story along with other great stories and content related to diversity, creative minds, travel, art and fashion. 

 Issue 7 of Majestic Disorder

Issue 7 of Majestic Disorder