Wednesday 24 February 2010

An ode to Brahim

We receive a great deal of enthusiasm and compliments from family and friends about our guesthouse in progress. The two floors which we build on top of the original house were designed by my partner who sat endlessly behind his drawing papers to create a style that would blend in well with the traditional Berber architecture of the Atlas Mountains. A project like this requires some sacrifices as well as perseverance when the going gets tough and positive response is always a very welcome encouragement! But it must be said that this achievement is only partially ours, the incredible dedication of our master bricklayer Brahim has made it all possible.

Brahim came to work for us as a bricklayer shortly after we had bought the house, building decorative walls in our garden with flagstones. He gradually began to work on the main construction of the first floor which is build mostly with large pieces of rock from the nearby river. During the years it has taken to finish the first and second floor he has become a devoted master in his profession. Almost every stone in the building has passed through his capable hands, starting as massive rocks at the river bed which he then skilfully cut’s into useful stones with a sledge hammer.

A bright sun invited us all out for a stroll down to the river this afternoon where we found Brahim collecting and cutting new rocks. I watched him with awe as he gathered new building material and somewhat embarrassed I realised that a great deal of the praise we receive really belongs to him.

Brahim, thank you for being our tower of strength!

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