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Mindset shift in Meknes, Morocco

· Iris

After three days of sightseeing around Fes, experiencing the old Medina life, Joey and I both felt somewhat tired. We reached Meknes by bus and checked into a grand riad just outside of the old town. As it turned out, we were the only ones staying that night...

Our room in Meknes.

Neither of us could sleep that night, perhaps both troubled by how the travel was going. Having done a full two weeks of pure tourism in Cuba and now in Morocco doing a similar type of travelling, we realized that this was not what either one of us had quit our jobs for. Me being the dramatic one in the relationship, I started off the heart-to-heart discussion by basically blaming Joey for all my miseries and insinuating that perhaps none of this is working out as I was better off on my own in Sicily (I know! So unnecessary...). This, of course, turned into a big argument (good thing there were no other guests in the house), which somehow magically (well, I guess we know by now that the benign truth is always buried under a layer of hurt and aggression) led to a sensible discussion on...

What did we quit our jobs for?

I think we both lost our directions for the year a little during all the travel planning and reading other travel bloggers' posts. From all the amazing pictures around the world and hearing how they have traveled 80-100 countries, we ended up thinking that's what we want to do; maybe because it gives us something immediate to show for it. But actually we found out that deep down we are not that bothered about not visiting the Royal Palace or missing a famous monument on our journey this year.

Okay, so we found out that we don't want to just sight-see our way around the world, but do we have the same journey in mind? No, is the short answer - and we realized that we are dragging each other down because of this.

Joey's drive on this journey is to meet people, especially fellow long-term travelers and to share stories together. I, on the other hand, would like to seek out challenges and learning as my old life, my old mindset was just getting too complacent and comfortable.

This changes everything!

The discussion went on all night and step by step we helped each other identify what we wanted from this year. Knowing that our objectives and the journeys we want to experience are slightly different, we are both happy to give the other person the time and space to explore those objectives. There was a big sense of relief on both sides and I didn't want to go backpacking in Southeast Asia and Joey wasn't that enthused about living in South America or going on a yoga retreat.

It was also a growing point in our relationship - by letting each other go, we end up being more together, more in awe of each other's independent growth.

Just because one person wants to take a selfie doesn't mean the other needs to show her face...

That night in Meknes, we each decided our next step after Morocco and Taiwan - Joey will be heading to Cambodia to start off his SE Asia backpacking adventure and I will be challenging myself with a one month yoga teacher training course in India!

Finding zen in Morocco avec mint tea.

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