While doing research today I was looking through my Moroccan photos from last year’s trip and came across this one I call the Old, the Classic, and the Modern. Along a stream in the barren desert of Morocco, life comes from water. The lush green of an oasis stands out in this eroded valley.
On top of the cliff is a modern town built up along a relatively new road to the area. Those houses maintain the old look, but are now built of concrete block, making them both less cool and less warm depending on the season. The tradeoff is the lower need for maintenance. The photo below shows a cut out of the modern village in the photo above.
Across the stream and lower down is the classic ksar (fortified town). Protection was provided in the way the homes were built together within tall walls and around a central open area. The walls were built from clay and straw and had to be maintained (new mud added) about every four years. The photo below is an enlarged cut showing the ksar from the top photo.
The old village is much harder to discern. It is underneath the modern town and can be seen by carefully looking along the cliff. The homes there were built in exactly the same building material as the classic ksar. Time is taking its toll and eventually the walls will disappear back into the earth from which it was built.
Now go back to the top photo and pick out the progression of all three states of this village. That’s a lot of history in a small space.