Up early again to louge to the desert oasis’s of Tozeur. Tozeurs 10 acres of palm trees are fed by over 200 springs that pump out over 60 million litres of water a day. I discover that dates come from palm trees. I’m not sure where I used to think they came from but it sure as hell wasn’t palm trees.
On arrival at my hotel one of the (creepy male) guests makes a pass at me. He hardly speaks any English and even after I explain about my ‘long term girlfriend’ he insists on hanging around outside my room while I sort my pack out.
I have been making the most of my newfound coffee pricing information. The local coffee shop owners obviously resent the fact that I am part of the secret Tunisian coffee club. They are so bitter in fact that I now watch them make the coffee whenever I order one. Alone again for just one day and already the paranoia has started.
Have been in Tozeur for 3 hours and already I have seen everything there is to see including the cool Dar Charait Museum. And on top of that I have got totally out of it on caffeine and done the tacky postcard thing. To make matters worse I am now gagging for a swim. Luckily Tozeur’s beautiful surroundings make it a prime stop on the Tunisia resort trail, which means that it comes with a full quota of luxury resorts – with luxury resort swimming pools. A brisk walk along the zone touristic reveal any number of choice locations just lining up to soak the skinny bald ones body. Polite enquires to a couple reveal that pools are for residents only and with rooms starting around 100 quid that’s a little over my budget.
Noticing that the next resort along, Hotel Sofitel Palm Beach, is the flashest place in town (and remembering my success with the luxuriant bogs in the hotel Sofitel Diwan in Rabat) I decide on a change of tactics. I stroll in like I own the place even though I am dressed in stinky sandals, baggy and dirty shorts, a black t-shirt with FREAK emblazoned across the front in huge white letters and a floppy hat. Pausing briefly in reception to suss the joint out (under the guise of looking at post cards) and make sure that the staff are all suitably distracted and I’m off up to the swimming pool where I confidently take a deck chair front and centre. Now I only have two hurdles left. I don’t speak anything other than English so if they speak to me in any way, even to offer me a drink, then they will know I am not with any of the tour groups in the hotel and the game will be up (I haven’t seen a single English tour group in Tunisia yet). The second hurdle is that I don’t have a swimsuit, so I have to swim in my boxer shorts, which could give me up as most punters in a 130 quid a night hotel can afford a swimming costume. A quick scan of the pool reveals some just plain embarrassing swimwear from the Europeans (Italians I think) present. If anything my boxes will look too normal. Sorted. 3 hours later I walk out the front door under my own steam (as opposed to being thrown out) complete with photo taken by a member of staff of self standing by pool in a black t-shirt with FREAK emblazoned across the front in huge white letters.