Interzone : Tangier’s Hedonistic Years

Interzone : Tangier’s Hedonistic Years

I made the journey to Interzone from Tarifa across the 11 mile stretch of Atlantic where, in the distance, the Rif mountains stood in a coruscating haze of a bright September day. Interzone is an area where sea, ocean and cultures collide.

Tangier was an International Zone from 1912 to 1956 and became the destination for many European and American spies, writers, artists and musicians. It enjoyed a reputation for hedonism where any pleasure was readily available. Indeed author William S. Burroughs who lived for long spells in Tangier, wrote, “Tangier is one of the few places left in the world where, so long as you don’t proceed to robbery, violence, or some form of crude, antisocial behaviour, you can do exactly what you want.” (more…)

Beyond Assi Ghat,  Varanasi

Beyond Assi Ghat, Varanasi

Assi Ghat is the southern most ghat in Varanasi where the Rivers Assi and Ganges join in confluence.  It is a quiet ghat,  popular with students from the close by Benares Hindu University,  Hindu worshippers who bath before paying homage to Lord Shiva in the form of huge lingam situated under a peepal tree,  and tourists who desire a quieter experience than that in central Varanasi.

Its origin is again bound up in Hindu folklore.  The first legend states that after slaying Shumbh-Nishumbh, goddess Durga threw her sword away, and where it landed resulted in the emergence of a big stream ( the river Assi).  Secondly,  legends say that Lord Rudra was furious with Asuras. This fury has led him to slay eighty Asuras in a day. Eighty in Hindi would translate to Assi. So the place where these Assi (eighty) Asuras were slain, has been named as Assi Ghat.