9 December 2023 – A Trip to the Fabric Shop

This is just a short blog to show that yes, we are still in Monastir Tunisia, and enjoying daily life. Shannon (on SV SWEETIE) put out an open invitation to join her in an outing to the “fabric shop” a few days ago. Since we didn’t have any boat projects going on, we jumped at the opportunity for an excursion off the boat, and out of town. The daily temperatures are about 18-22C, and it falls to 11-16C at night, depending on whether there is a system moving through. It rains every few days, mostly at night.

This excursion involved first walking from the marina to the train station (in the middle of town) about 1.4km away, and then taking a local train/metro to the town of Saline another 12km from here. The trains are very cheap ($ 0.25 CDN for a 12km ride), clean, and on time. There are signs of vandalism here and there on the train (a few cracked windows), but otherwise, I have no complaints. Sometimes the trains are full, standing room only, but we were lucky travelling in the middle of the day to easily get a seat.

The building was very modest, and didn’t even have a sign out front.

However, inside was another world entirely. It was the largest fabric shop I have ever been to, and it was on two floors. A single photo really doesn’t capture the content.

We went with the idea of finding some fabric suitable for Diane to make some new fender covers, and yes – we found just what we were looking for.

If you look for this shop using Google, you won’t find it. In fact, it is our observation that in “third world” countries (if this term even exists anymore), Google is very poor to identify resources that you should be able to find. Why is that? Here is a photo of the shop’s Arabic business card, and what I translated to English.

On the way back, we stopped in for lunch in Monastir at yet another local restaurant that we have never visited before. Together with Tony and Shannon (on SV SWEETIE), we had the daily special of either rice and chicken or couscous and chicken. We clocked in about 7,000 steps, bought fabric and had lunch out — it was a great day!