In a restaurant on the edge of a turquoise lagoon, we found our lunch. Fresh from the Atlantic, we dined on spider crab legs, urchin roe, and a dozen of Oualidia's famous oysters— the largest oysters I've ever seen!
The oysters were served with lemon wedges, and a vinegar flavoured with onions and radishes— a beautiful combination of sweetness, tartness, and sea. Their cool briny flesh melted on my tongue, the sensation returning me to my early twenties in Rhode Island. On a whim, a couple of friends and I decided to pool our money together for oysters and martinis in Newport one day— a very, very rare treat for so-called starving artists. I think we managed a martini and two oysters each, though I seem to recall that we took more pleasure in the contrast between our posh surroundings, our combat boots, tattoos, and coloured hair. Here in Oualidia, oysters are offered to any passerby from baskets on the backs of motorbikes— men of all ages patrol the sands with blades, lemons, and the same baskets, with a "Huîtres? Huîtres?"
Lately I have become acutely aware of the passage of time— I suppose this is normal for someone nearing forty. So much has happened and changed since that day in Newport! I never would have believed it if someone had whispered to me then that I would find the love of my life in Istanbul, that we would one day be enjoying oysters on a beach in Morocco, and that they would taste so sweet.