September 11, 2007
These crumbled, overgrown ruins are what remain of the Roman outpost of Sala Colonia and the Merenid town of Chellah. It is said that the Phoenicians were the first to settle in this arid land. The Romans came in 40AD and built a thriving little outpost city, which was to last until the Berbers took over. The city was left to rot in 1154 when everyone move shop down river to the Sale on the coast. But over a hundred years later interest was again taken in this area and walled fortifications and towers were built upon the Roman ruins, which was called Chellah.
I found this little skeleton of a city to be remarkably tranquil. It stands on a high bank over the Oued Bou Regreg river and has a clear view of the surrounding countryside. I just walked around this little enclosure taking photographs with my imagination transplanted a thousand years in the past. There was a gentle breeze and I found that women still go to a little pool within the ruins to feed boiled eggs to eels in order to ensure fertility and a smooth childbirth.
Women feeding eggs to eels with cats watching on.