David Henniger is in trouble. Long before he kills a young Moroccan man in the high desert of the country as a result of drunk driving, his marriage to Jo is already shaky. Also in the bad news department: his medical practice in England is on unsure footing after a malpractice lawsuit. David and Jo are on their way to an upscale weekend party hosted by their expat friends Richard and Dally in a ksar
(castle) in the Moroccan hinterland. Guests have flown in from all over Europe, the wine flows freely, elaborate food, dancing and drugs are all par for the course. When David hits and kills Driss, the young fossil seller who happens to step in front of the car, he and Jo don't know what to do with the body - as a quick solution, they bring it along to Richard and Dally's party.
So there is the body awaiting its burial while the party is in full swing. The servants, all...
Beyond the Book
is, in part, a wonderful travelogue which explores deep into the heart of Morocco, in particular into the lives of the Moroccan fossil diggers.
Morocco is rich in a variety of fossils and because parts of the country's Anti-Atlas mountains (a part of the Atlas mountains also called Lesser Atlas or Little Atlas) date back more than 500 million years they are overflowing with them. Limestones from the Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian and Devonian periods abound. During the early Cambrian period, as improbable as it might seem now, these parts of Morocco were covered by sea, and animals such as trilobites were extremely common. Trilobites are extinct marine arthropods with an exoskeleton. Because their skeletons were hard and resisted compaction, they were...