Peace Corps Adventures

Thursday, September 28, 2006

life in khemmisett

not much time to update properly.

finally adjusting to life in morocco, or should i say my stomache is. there are so many new experiences that happen every day. i am now in khemmisett; where i will live for the next 10 weeks as well as the city of azrou; which is a two hr drive away. khemmisett is a city of 100 thousand people and azrou a city of 50 thousand located in a mountain basin. azrou is beautiful and quite modern for a middle atlas city, which makes the prices for everything a little higher than other places.

my assignment before swearing in; in sha allah; is in a city that is the biggest of the cities that the small business developers have assigned: some are in small villages; so i am very lucky to have electricity water and only a fifteen minute walk to school each day.

school is six days a week in the classroom, but basically every minute of the day is school, as i live with a family that is very supportive for my language training. i am very happy that i do not know enough french to converse much, because it forces me to focus on the essentials of learning moroccan arabic, called darija. i am picking it up slowly each day and already i am able to understand the television programs that are on after the fasting ends for the day.

i started pre service training a couple of days before ramadan started. today i fasted for the first time, which received great praise from my family and was seen as a great accomplishment.

we are working with a artisan co op in khemmisett, working at the moment with skilled wood carvers and also the women in the neddi; which is the sewing and embroidery co op. both groups are so skilled. being a women though here provides to be difficult at time, especially when i explain that i work with wood and ceramics in the states, because these are skills that only men are allowed to do in morocco.

i have so much more to explain, and so little time to express all that i go through each day. yesterday though; i took a horse and buggy to school. every corner here in khemmisett provides surprises. donkeys and bicycles with children too small for the bicycle, wild animals everywhere. my family has pigeons as pets on the roof, and people eat pigeons here as well. which makes me want to vomit; but to each his own.

i will blog more extensively in a couple of days when i get back to azrou on tuesday.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

good to hear all is well in northern africa. it's starting to cool down to a comfy 95 degrees here. life must be rough in that chilly mediterranean air. good luck with the rest of staging. being a PeaceCorpsVolunteer does not suck

4:30 AM  
Blogger sachi said...

I really think that you have a talent when it comes to languages...
Looking forward to hearing more stories!!

6:55 PM  
Blogger Gigs said...

Good to hear that you are getting along. I cant even imagine the experience you are having!

2:18 PM  

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