Tanger, Morocco—Having passed the night in Gibraltar, Vi and I took the ferry across the Strait to Tanger in a state of grave trepidation, I more than she. We were going into the dark heartland of Islamic barbarity. I knew what Moslems were, having listened to the Republican candidates for the presidency, and I was obviously an American. There was no doubt about it: They would hate me for my freedoms, and perhaps blow me up. Yet such was my passion for journalism that I was going to risk it. I am that sort of man.Read the rest here.
The day was mercifully warm after the chill greyness of Madrid, the sky blue and cloudless. The other passengers in the lounge were mostly Arabs. I watched them carefully. I knew that at any moment they might draw their scimitars and behead me for my freedoms.
We docked at the Port of Tanger, passed through passport control with suspicious ease, and caught a taxi for the long ride along the coast to Tanger proper. The driver was named Abdulah. I would soon conclude that all Moslems were named Abdullah. He was a roundish balding fellow in his mid-forties and looked as though he should have been a pizza chef in Brooklyn but had somehow missed his calling. He liked to talk and did so in good if not elegant Spanish.
Yes, he said, times were bad. The economy was wretched. In Morocco the politicians were corrupt bastards, he said, which was the root of the problem. I said that we had the same difficulty in the United States. Violeta, not inclined to allow Mexico to be diminished by comparison, asserted that her country's cabrones politicos were as corrupt as any that Abdulah and I might present in evidence. Having established our common humanity, we rode on in peace. I'm not sure Abdulah even had a scimitar.