Haggle, hassle and hustle...
There are three things that your either hate or simply tolerate in Morocco; the haggling, the hassling and the hustling.
Everyone likes a bargain but no one wants to feel ripped off. When you express interest in buying something a Moroccan trader might start his pitch at say 400% of what he's eventually likely to accept. OK it can be fun beating him down but at the same time you are always left with that nagging doubt that you have paid well over the odds no matter what the final agreement. Haggling is part of life in Morocco but it can actually put you off buying things in the first place. I longed for shops with prices on display so at least I could make a purchase fully aware that I paying through the nose rather than being uncertain.
In a recent poll 90% of first time visitors said that they would not come back to Morocco due to the hassle they got on the street. You take turn into a street and, "English? English! Come this way. This way here. HERE. My brother's shop. Beautiful leather. This way, sir. Hey, 'fish and chips', come this way" etc. You manage to shake him but a few steps further on it starts again "English? English! Come this way." Grrr. Sometimes young guys would just start walking next to you talking at you and then demand money saying they had been your guide. And demand they did, quite forcefully. The famous 'tourism police' were nowhere to be seen. It actually made going out on the street, especially in Marrakech, at best a trial and at worst a pain in the bum. A hassle we didn't really need.
And finally, Moroccans hustle. It's what they do. Hustling as tour guides, as cultural advisors, as taxi drivers, for friendship, for sex, to supply drugs - you name it. Moroccans are up for hire. And nearly all tourists are seen as fair game to hustle to. On the street, in a shop, at the airport, in hamams, at the port, in a bar - we were approached. And despite being fully aware of the abject poverty here we turned them down. It just didn't seen right. And whatsmore we were a little afraid.