Morocco has been at the top of my travel list for as long as I can remember. I don’t remember exactly how it got there but I’m sure it started in my youth with images of palm trees and an oasis. Although over time as I read more and inundated myself with pictures of souks, the Sahara, and realized its close proximation to Spain, the idea of visiting Tangiers and Marrakech moved closer to the top of my travel queue. There was also an obsessive relationship with a movie staring Kate Winslet and two adorable English girls. In the movie Kate travels to Marrakech with her two young girls to discover more about Sufism and escape from England. So, when I saw an old paperback copy of Hideous Kinky by Esther Freud (the great-granddaughter of Sigmund) at a used bookstore in town I had to have it. In the book (and the movie) the two girls, Bea and Lucy play little word games to entertain themselves, their favorite words being, hideous and kinky. Here is a little conversation between the girls and their mum,
We ate our breakfast in Algeciras. Bread rolls and Fanta.
“Is it very hideous to be an undesirable?” Bea asked.
Hideous was Bea’s and my favourite word. ’Hideous’ and ’Kinky’. They were the only words we could remember Maretta ever having said.
‘Hideous kinky. Hideous kinky,’ I chanted to myself.
‘It is . . . If you want to get into Morocco.’ Mum answered.
When we arrived in Tangier later that day after a short and sunny second crossing there was no Dave in sight. The officers waved us through with only a glance at our passports and everyone except Maretta shouted and yelled as loud as they could to celebrate.
And if you’re looking for an adolescent angsty summer read set in a Tuscan Villa look no further
than Love Falls, also by Esther Freud. Perfect for laying by the pool pretending you’re a teenager again.