Lipstick was ready to board the ferry in the harbour of Algeciras by 9am but had to wait before being allowed on board.
Quick and highly efficient passport control but no customs officials available to stamp the carnet de passage so one has to wait and see what happens further down the line with this document.The ship was really huge capable of taking some 150 motor cars and trucks but only about 30 vehicles were on board before taking off
It was rather misty when the boat took leave from Europe and headed to Africa on time at 10am
The on-board facilities where great with a small restaurant and even a Moroccon passport control officer for pre clearance ….
On arrival in Morocco chaos interrupted – Lipstick had to line up for custom clearance and passport control – Willy had to fill out a green form which was collected by an official who collected all these papers from various cars and then disappeared , patiently waiting Willy decided that after 20 minutes that this needs to be investigated and proceeded to the custom control office enquiring about further procedures.
“ You need to go to police for passport control:
“But my passport was already stamped on the boat”who finally asked me whether I
“You must go to passport police”
Ok so walking another 200m to the police office showing the passport the conversation took another swing
“What do you want”
“You must clear my passport”
“But you already have a stamp in the passport from the boat”
“yes but customs up there told me to come to you”
“These guys are stupid – your passport is fine”
Back to customs trying to find my friendly customs guy who asked me whether I have been to the police for passport control .
“Yes Sir I have been there “
“Is it your rist time in Morroco “
“where are you going from here”
“Oh so you are in Transit”
“Yes I am “
“Then you need to go to Scanner”
“What ?? “
“Go back to port entrance where they will scan you car”
Lipstick obliged finding its way through a labyrinth of roads to arrive at something never seen before a Huge Truck with a scanner attached. Lipstick had to park in line with 5 other cars wherafter the scanner moved along them to xray all contents.
Wow ..it took about 15 minutes for the scanner to pass all the cars and Lipstick then proceeded to the exit where a police officer just waived it through – Willy stopped:
“ sorry Sir , do I get a clearance stamp or what is the procedure”
“No you are fine – you can go back to customs”
Well, Lipstick did exactly that only to find out that another boat must have arrived and there are some 130 cars ahead in the lines trying to get clearance.
Where is the customs official who send Lipstick to the scanner – NOWHERE!
Ok ,Willy filled out another green form which was collected and again the new customs official disappeared. The old custom official was nowhere to be seen.
30 Minutes later someone shouted from the office window requesting Willy to come.
“ Mr Willy did you fill out 2 forms “
“Yes I did “
“This is not necessary we found you old form – did you go to scanner”
At this point Willy took out the cell phone to show the official the photo (see above) to prove that Lipstick was indeed scanned.
“NO NO you are not allowed to take pictures here please take camera away”
So Willy did not show him the pictures at all and still does not know what proof the official has that Lipstick was indeed scanned.
“I need to inspect your car “
Doors wereopened , whilst explaining that there are only personal effects such as clothing in the car and surely the scanner could have found any hidden rockets , arms or ammunition …
“Mr Willy – you are fine you can go now here are your papers for the check out.
Happily Lipstick was then lined up behind another 15 cars and eventually made it through the check point onto the roads of Morocco…..
Not sure about the speed limits Lipstick was sticking behind reasonable high speed cars hoping that if at all the car in front would be stopped by the speed cops first …
Some 340 km later Lipstick arrived in Casablanca and was offered a secure fenced in parking bay at the Sofitel Hotel – not far from the famous mosque…