A book retracing the experience of the Swiss in Morocco

In this year 2021, Switzerland is celebrating the centenary of its diplomatic presence in Morocco. Through numerous activities, the Swiss Embassy tries to highlight this important milestone in the bilateral relationship. On this occasion, the representation announced the publication of a work entitled ” My Morocco “, and which brings together several stories of Swiss nationals in the Kingdom.

Having consulted a copy of this work, MoroccoLatestNews discovered a dozen testimonies of Swiss who have lived a history in Morocco by embarking on adventures and magnificent experiences which made that finally, they chose the country as a home sheltering their dream.

Proud of our work ‘Mon🇲🇦’ produced by the Embassy of #Swiss to #Morocco. It brings together several stories from my compatriots engaged in.
I will share with you 2 stories per weekend. Be sure to let me know your thoughts!# 100ansPresenceDiplomatic pic.twitter.com/fTdSz9hNJp

– Ambassador Guillaume Scheurer (@AmbSuisseMaroc) December 1, 2021

The discovery of dinosaurs

Among the Moroccan experiences retraced in this book, there is that of Jacqueline and Michel Monbaron, who conceived a common life project, that of living for a while in a country other than Switzerland developed and integrating there to immerse oneself in another culture. The wind transported them to Morocco in 1976, when Michel was hired by the Moroccan Ministry of Energy and Mines with the mandate of establishing the geological map of a region of the High Atlas.

During their stay in Morocco with their 4 year old son, Michel made an astonishing discovery in 1979, of an almost complete fossil of the dinosaur ” Atlasaurus Imelakei“, A large herbivorous quadruped. After eight months of excavations and several years of laboratory work, they were able to complete the reconstruction of one of the largest dinosaurs, unknown until then, and which measures nearly 18 meters. To highlight their love for Morocco, the couple, who lived between the High Atlas and Rabat, published a book entitled ” The Dinosaur Route ”.

The Right to Laughter

Hansjorg Huber, is a Zurich resident very sensitive to social inequalities, says the book. During a visit to a village of children victims of war, when he was only a young 22-year-old officer from a well-to-do class, his conscience was changed forever and he swears that one day, he will create his own village to help underprivileged children, abandoned or victims of denial by adults.

This dream, Hansjorg Huber was able to realize in Morocco where he created a non-profit and social association. “Dar Bouidar”, built about thirty km from Marrakech in the direction of Ourika, with the aim of welcoming and taking care of the well-being of abandoned children.

The principle of “Dar Bouidar”, which is made up of twelve family houses, and that each foster child lives in his house with a mother (qualified educator), brothers and sisters which creates this family atmosphere and allows the children to grow and flourish. The Zurich resident gave his children a maximum of assets for their future, by teaching them in addition to the local language, French and English. Hansjorg Huber hopes in this way to inspire other people, who can in turn give a little compassion and why not a home to disadvantaged children.

The desert train

Following the reading of an article on Morocco, Edi Kunz and two of his friends decide to spend their holidays there in Toubkal in particular. The beauty of the sites and the kindness of the people completely captivated Edi and pushed him a few years later to open a travel agency in Biel dedicated especially to Morocco where he worked for several years before leaving Switzerland for Marrakech and continuing his activity. travel agent on site.

Some time later, Edi buys a hotel in Tinghir, where he falls in love with the magic of the place and the beauty of nature. With the tourist offer that is developing in Morocco, Edi hears about a train in the desert, and begins to think and look for how to create a rail circuit in Morocco. After intense research, Edi finds a night train connecting Oujda to Bouarfa, with return the next day. But the line is used to transport minerals to Nador.

Enthusiastic, Edi suggests that the national authorities launch a tourist train project. The latter gave it their support, and the desert train was launched in 2005. It thus took its first travelers on an exciting adventure, with a maximum speed of 55km / H over approximately 300 km, between Oujda and Bouarfa.

When the Ouarzazate film studios are looking for a railway line for an American film, Edi shows them his train and the production is immediately won over. This is how the last James Bond, Specter, was shot on the line of this train.

Red Gold

After several years spent as deputy mayor in Switzerland, Christine Ferrari, leaves to relax in the Moroccan desert where she lives a relaxing experience which prompted her to return quickly and leave Switzerland to create a lodging in Morocco. An idea that unfortunately did not come to fruition, but Christine loves Morocco. While visiting Ourika, Christine falls in love with the world of Saffron which reminds her of tender childhood memories.

After a year of intense research, she finally found the land of her dreams and in 2012 created “Le Paradis du saffron” at the foot of the Atlas, where she worked tirelessly with the Berber women of the surroundings to cultivate her land (about 20,000m2 dedicated to the production of saffron and 5,000 to different aromatic and medicinal plants, flowers and fruits).

The success of this immense organic garden filled with a thousand colors and natural aromas, Christine owes it to the support of the women who work with her, underlines the book. This a story of meeting and love with Morocco. Today, Christine cannot imagine her future anywhere other than in her Moroccan paradise. She found there the well-being and tranquility she was looking for.

My Morocco“, Thus tells about ten stories similar to those which we have just summarized and which show the inescapable attachment of Switzerland to our country and how they promote our history and our culture in their country of origin, with love and dedication.



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