The Palais Salaam has had a hoarding proclaiming a festival of parachuting since January. It has all reached a climax this week with the 5th Arabic and 1st African International Display Parachute Team Competition.
There are seven teams participating from Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Egypt, Bahrain and Libya. The Libyan team was particularly proud to attend and had had considerable difficulties getting here given the still riven state of the country, so it is particularly tragic that one of their team was sadly killed in competition.
We had spent the week looking out for the odd parachutist but saw none, only empty blue sky,
so drove out to the Sidi Dahmane airfield to have a look. The airfield had new signage and banners displaying its hosting of the event and a number of tented pavilions erected. It also had a military road-block on the main road by the entrance so we did not stop to take pictures.
The winner will be decided in an event this afternoon and the finale is tomorrow with the awards ceremony.
Meanwhile the town is preparing for this year's 10 km race which is on Sunday. It is as usual sponsored by a coffee and tea company and stalls are going up round the fountains in preparation.
It is 33C here at the moment which is a bit hot for racing but they are threatening light rain and showers for the day itself.