Taliouine is really just a village but is the centre for saffron and is only grown in this area, and harvested in September and October. It has a really good Souk held every Monday. We arrived at 9.30 and it was in full swing,really lovely seeing people greeting each other, having coffee together, haggling over the price of straw , chickens, goats, or even the simplest thing for example a bag of oranges. Believe me what ever you wanted without doubt you would be able to buy it in a Souk.
Meat counters are certainly different than at home, no such thing as refrigeration, you can see a whole animal hanging, and in some cases you can see live goats and hens lying on the ground waiting their turn for under the knife. It dosent come fresher than this.
Merv was looking for honey, oh boy did he get honey, combs and all. The bees were buzzing around us everywhere and as we went over to the stall, a lovely man stuck a knife into a pot and let us taste it, very sweet for me, but Merv gave the thumbs up to him, so the negiotating started and we settled on a small jar of honey. He didnt have a small jar in his collection so he hopped across to another stall and got a small jar and filled it for us, wiped the outside of the jar with water as it was sticky. Nothing is a problem once they will make a sale, and everything done with a smile.
We also bought coffee, coffee with a difference as we discovered when we got back, as because it was beside all the very strong smelling spices, namely saffron, guess what we had saffron flavoured coffee LOL. No worries though, washed it under the tap and dried it in the sun in the afternoon and according to the coffee Maestro its pretty damn good, saffron and all.
Fruit and veg are very plentiful here and very cheap, I bought quite a few of both and all less than 1 euro, petty good really.
The Souk was mainly all men, a very small percentage womenn, and not too many children either, which I think was a good sign as hopefully they were in school. Nobody paid us a bit of attention, we pottering through doing our shopping just like everybody else. Some people were buying in bulk, obviously stocking up for their own little shops, and as it got nearer to midday cars and vans started filling up with people and shopping, not an inch of space wasted.
It was time for a coffee stop, so we picked a sun drenched terrace in the middle of the market, with posh white plastic tables and chairs, and were served beautiful coffee by a very elderly man, the locals all sitting in side in the shade wondering why we wanted to be in the sun, easy known we were Irish ! LOL.
Shopping done, and not even a handbag bought, yet .