Done is done: The boys made it to Casablanca in time and hit Morocco’s first ever block party in style and grace.
The plans of slowly driving down the Algarve have to be reassessed with the result that one night in Lagos, Portugal is enough. Of course it’s a beautiful place, but it’s boring here anyway. No money to be made and money is a rare necessity, as it has been over the last weeks.
On day 37 three boys leave Portugal again, back to Spain. The southernmost point of Europe is their destination: Tarifa. The distance between Tarifa and Morocco is only 14 kilometres and ferries to Tangier leave on an hourly basis from Tarifa harbour.
On the way to Tarifa, Team Defender makes a short stopover at photo point number one – a beautiful lookout in the mountains around Tarifa with a perfect view of the African coast. On a nice day. It isn’t a nice day. Instead of Africa, Jamie, Hanno and Max face a white wall of foggy nothingness with a dim outline of what could be the African coast or anything else.
But even just the imagination of what’s behind the white wall and the thought that only a little later they will be over there, looking at Tarifa turns the disappointment into a proud, excited shudder. Although it’s still not clear to anyone involved what will actually happen in Casablanca, the fact that they are so close to their aim makes them truly happy. As simple as that.
Day 39. The only thing that now separates them from completing their mission? Money, this mundane commodity … They have enough to buy their ticket to Tangier, so before anything else, meaning before having dinner and spending too much, the boys take all their money to the ferry company. 130 Euros lighter but with a ticket Tarifa – Tangier, our three heros, Max, Jamie and Hanno, realize that now they don’t have that much money left to actually make it down to Casablanca, another 300 kilometres away from the harbour of Tangier.
It’s not much that is missing but enough to make them sweat. The idea to go to the popular fiesta that is taking place in Tarifa and try to make the missing bucks is not such a bad one. Only that it doesn’t work out. Flamenco dancers and toreros on Arabian horses pass by in huge quantities, but nobody and by that we mean nobody, stops.
A little kid curiously looks at them and waits for something like five seconds, but that’s about it. 0 Euros and 15 minutes of two hours wasted before the ferry to Africa takes off. The only option now left is to try and make the missing 30 Euros at the harbour to keep the time stress to a minimum. That, too, is a clever idea. With boats leaving and coming in every 60 minutes you’d think that there are enough people around to sell 3 CDs to. Only that neither this plan works out. Nobody is there. They probably all went to the fiesta.
Maybe it’s the panic in their eyes as they see their scheduled ferry leave, maybe it’s the sweat dripping down their faces and their vivid explanation of their plan, maybe it’s a combination of everything, but they find three people that are willing to buy a CD in order to help the boys fill up the last bit of their tank.
Jamie, Hanno, Max, without David, hop onto the next boat leaving Europe and 40 minutes later find themselves in a completely different world. The first few minutes in Tangier are about corruption and bribery – another 10 Euros down the drain. But they quickly leave that city behind them and drive into the night towards Casablanca.
Shortly after midnight - and no, we are no nitpickers – it’s day 39 – the Defender plus its team, the couch, the box, the skateboard, the broken laptop, lots of cables and Lonely Planets, everything that we all saw coming and going over the last weeks enters the city with the most romantic name. Been there, done that.
The next day is a sunny Sunday in Casablanca and the streets are quiet. Again luck was on the boys’ side and after a lot of nights in a row sleeping on top of the car respectively in the car, they had a good night’s sleep on a comfy mattress at their friend Hoofer’s house. Much appreciated, especially here in Casablanca where it’s not as easy anymore to find a safe spot. It’s Stalingrad times two.
After a late and hearty breakfast and a shower in the garden, preparations for the last, grand night are under way. Equipment has to be checked – i.e. cables have to be found – and a pavilion that was stashed away deeply in the Defender – together with so many other things that never ever made an appearance over the last 39 days – but made it from Berlin to Casablanca just for this sole occasion, has to be set up. It’s also the first time, the service of the generator, which together with the pavilion travelled from Berlin to Casablanca, is engaged. This really is a big night for everyone and everything.
The block party is scheduled for 5 pm and as opposed to the likes in Berlin, people actually show up on time and expect to hear some music. And if it wasn’t for one cable … but again, as opposed to Germany, there’s no hectic rush. It starts when it starts and that’s that. Up until five minutes before the boys never knew what to expect of this night.
They never knew if they should expect 2 people, 200 or 2000 or if the promotion tour through Casablanca the night before would have any impact on the party. When they finally have a minute to take a look at the audience, the nervousness finds a new level: at least 60 people, children, teenagers and parents just sit there, chat away and wait.
Since they really didn’t know what to expect, and aren’t that used to big crowds yet, proud smiles flash across their faces. Only a little later than planned, Jamie, Hanno and Max get the mikes and open the stage for Bizz2Risk, Flip & Flow and other MCs who feel like they want to join in.
This night is the boys’ own, personal grand finale that they want to share, this is the culmination of what they wanted form this trip all along the way. It’s a get-together of musicians, graffiti and Hip Hop artists and friends, making and sharing music. It is what they wanted for the last night of their trip. It’s Bizz2Risk with Flip & Flow, it’s Flip & Flow with H-to-O, it’s JollyJay and Hoofer.
What they didn’t want is for it to end rather abruptly. They play something like three songs before other MCs – and there are a lot of them – conquer the stage and take over the mikes. “Fair enough,” they think, “we will continue later on and now have the time for a little recap with the film team.”
The blue couch is put into position, while the party is still going on in the background. They only just start to talk about these last six weeks, when suddenly all the music stops and all the people disappear in no time. No more beats, no more freestyles, but the rumours that the police showed up and put an end to the 39 Days Hip Hop block party, to JollyJay, H-to-O and Max’s night and with money being tight as always, bribery is out of question.
It’s a bit of a sad ending to our story, the disappointment on the boys’ faces is more than obvious, they probably didn’t want this night to end at all, but then again, the irony of the recurring theme leaves a warm feeling.