Safi - potteries, sulphates and Norwegian adventurers

Espen Aalstad
Wed 24 Oct 2007 19:36
32:18.5N 09:14.96W Port of Safi
A moonlight overnight passage with no wind and 138 nm to Safi. 
We have developed a routine overnight and this time breakfast on the quiet sea was special. Einar enjoying a quiet breakfast before he (and Regi) suddenly see a shark tail and the rest of the ham becomes sharks bait.
Safi was once the biggest fishing port for sardines in the world and also where Thor Heyerdal left on his RA II expedition. Not a sign of his legacy now.
Even if conveniently located, this is not a popular sailors' port so we knew this was going to be different.
Indeed Safi is still a big port now with sulphate loading and fishing boats. Visiting was only an American sail couple and us hanging onto a fishing boat barely afloat. Next to was us supposedly Pol Pot's old boat "Royal Spice". In the water mostly garbage.
Next to us a lively fishing boat where young boys fished their lunch and BBQed it - while trying to make contact with us.

Our real interest in Safi was for its pottery. This is were most of beautiful Moroccan pottery is made. Inside the Medina we found a local artist who showed us the Collier de Potterie and the small "factories". Almost like a production line from house to house starting with hammering the rocks to clay to burning in the ovens. Hard and impressive work. We had to buy, of course, in the artis cooperative and everbody was happy with our "bargain". The Safi blue cobbalt is beautiful.

Safi's old Portugese fort above the pottery quarter. Einar and Magnus is making their own creations from clay.

Our early evenig stroll through the bazar and town gave us a real good feel for everyday life. Here there were no tourists and we were glad know more of this wonderful country and its people.