by Beth Arnold
An ongoing series about uprooting our lives in America and moving to France. For what's happened before, see previous Jours of Our Lives entries here .
CLEAR LIGHT BURST open the sky, illuminating clues of Henri Matisse hidden in the muddle of Tangier. We stood on the periphery of the Grand Socco looking up and down for the way to the Grand Hotel Villa de France, where the Matisses had stayed and Henri had glimpsed scenes that matched his artistic vision. Jim was armed with a book of the paintings, and I carried my Morocco guide and map. We looked every bit the awkward rube tourists, but most Moroccans don’t know much, if anything, about the artist whose lush paintings have etched the colors and forms of their country in the minds of art-lovers throughout the world. A couple of guides, real or faux, approached us, but we convincingly declined. I don’t engage in conversation with hustlers unless it feels safe and right. In any case, we wanted to be on our own.