William Tell in Morocco

When we were living in Morocco, there was a series of break ins in our neighborhood.  We heard stories from all of our America neighbors. Whoever it was, they were breaking into all the American’s homes in Tamara, the village we lived in outside of Rabat.  We were actually the first Americans to live Tamara, but after we moved there, several other American families decided to move there too.

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At one of our American neighbor’s houses, they had a big German Shepherd.  It was raining out, and they decided to lock their German Shepherd in a room outside so he wouldn’t get wet.  After they locked him up, they went on to sleep. They hadn’t closed their shutters, just their windows. The Arab came along and slowly chipped all the putty off from around their window.  They took the whole glass pane and slowly laid it down without breaking it, and the window was open.  They sneaked inside the house.

They went into the bedroom. They stole the man’s shoes and his wallet.  They may have gotten more, but the wife woke up and heard him.  The husband jumped out of bed and ran after him.  The Arab had a huge machete (a long rounded knife)!  The Arab didn’t stop, though. He jumped out the window, and away he went!  Afterward, the man realized that chasing a man with a machete was probably a pretty dumb thing to do  and was glad he didn’t catch the  Arab thief. They regretted they had locked the dog up because of the rain thinking the dog would have barked and warned them. The next day, their kids had quite a story to tell at school, and that is how I heard it.  They were not the only Americans who had been broken into, and my parents were getting worried.

My dad was an electrician. His job was teaching electricity to the Arabs.  He worked out of the American embassy. Americans weren’t allowed to have guns, but he knew he needed to do something.  He was pretty good with a bow and arrow, and he put a bow and arrows, a butcher knife, and a baseball bat under the edge of his bed. If any Arab with a machete broke in, he would be armed.  He also decided to wire the outside doors to the electric sockets. He put a wet mat outside each of our outside doors.  He wrapped wire around the door knob and put the other end of the wire in the electric outlet.

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We all went to sleep one night, and we heard someone trying to get in the back door. They were shaking really hard.  The water and electricity caused them not to be able to let go.  My dad jumped out of bed!  He grabbed his bow and arrow and went to the balcony.  Somehow the Arab got loose of the door knob.  He was running through the yard toward our front gate.  My dad began shooting the arrows at him!  My dad was yelling in Arabic, “Never come back!”  The man said as he went out the gate, “Don’t worry! I won’t!”

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He never came back to our house, but he did go to another American’s house.  The American family had a teenage son who had come in late and forgotten and left the back door unlocked.  The Arab robber came by and found the back door unlocked and let himself in.  He opened the fridge and found the beer and a big jar of mayonnaise.  He also found a pair of shoes.  He went out on the front lawn. He put the shoes on.  He sat there and drank all the beer and ate a whole large jar of mayonnaise. He got drunk and passed out. They found him there the next morning and called the police. There were no more break ins after that, so the police knew they had found their culprit.

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