Sunday, September 5, 2010

Two month catch up...

I’ve been kinda crappy at keeping up with this blog, I always think about things I want to write about when I’m out and about and of course I never write them down, so they never get blogged about. So what I’ve decided to do is just make some bullet points with highlights of the past few months.
  • I went to my host sister in Tazentoute (my first host families) wedding, which was awesome because I was invited to take part in the ‘family only’ part of the wedding. This consisted of an extra meal of lunch, sitting with her while she sat and got her henna done and then traveling with her to ‘deliver’ her to a hotel in her new town after the 3 day wedding (the woman traditionally move in with the mens family). It was also great going back to Tazentoute for the first time since I’ve move to Tidili, I got to see all the family and friends that treated me so well during my first 2 months in country
  • My language is coming along little by little. Peace Corps tests us every time we meet (right after CBT, again during PPST and then again during IST, etc) so we get to see where we stand in language. I don’t think the test is completely accurate of where we are in language but its nice to have some sort of grading system. The test doesn’t really mean much, you just have to ‘pass’ the first time (which I did) and I got the next level up this time, so that’s reassuring since somedays I feel like my language is really nonexistent…
  • We had our two weeks of training in Ouarzazate at the end of July. This was the first time all 42 of us Health volunteers were together since swearing in 3 months before so it was awesome catching up with everyone. So far we have only lost 2 people from our group (they decided PC wasn’t for them so they ETed-early terminated) so its fun catching up with everyone, hearing about their sites, stories, etc. Peace Corps also put us up in a pretty nice hotel, with a REAL bathroom (toilet, shower, bathtub AND towels), air conditioning and a pool. It was nice to be spoiled for those two weeks (mine was cut short thanks to my health problem, but whatever, I’m better now!)
  • My house finally feels like a home. I have all the necessities to live, I’m just picking up the random things along the way now. Its great having my own house, a place to retreat and regroup but its also very difficult being a female living alone, since that is not something my community is used to. I know they have good intentions but I can very rarely get through more than 2 hours without SOMEONE knocking on my door to bring me bread, check on me, see if I want to come over to eat later, etc. It’s been great for my language because its easy to lock myself in the house but with people coming over I’m constantly having to talk…. 
  • My landlords family has adopted me as one of their own, they are amazing. They were the host family for two other volunteers sometime around 2000 so they are awesome with speaking slow and understanding my charades. My landlord of a hodge (I’m sure I’m not spelling that right), which means he has traveled to Mecca. He has 4 children, 3 boys and 1 girl. One of the sons lives with him (hes a taxi driver here) and I looove his wife, Nzha, shes around my age (forget how old) and has two children. She comes over to my house almost everyday, it’s great because shes super patient with me and laughs at my mispronunciations. I think her and I will be great friends. His daughter, Aiesha, also lives near me and shes awesome. I went over to her house the other day and she sent me home with bread and soup after stuffing me full-incase I got hungry when I was at home later. All in all the family is wonderful, for example: the power went out tonight, at about 7 (right before it gets dark) and before I even had time to freak out half the family was at my door explaining to me the power was out in all of Tidili. They then walked me to their house for lfdur and held me hostage until the power came back. They defiantly take great care of me, and I am so grateful to have such a great family so close by.  
  • Ramadan is almost over. Although I'm not fasting (see previous post) it will be nice to be able to drink water out in public again, it’s really hard when I have to go to souk (Main town and weekly market) and cant bring a water bottle. It will also be nice not to have to constantly argue why I’m not Muslim or fasting- most people wont argue with me and understand why I’m not fasting, but the occasional few will not drop the subject and it gets a bit frustrating. 
  • Last but not least, I went on a 22 hour hike with my site mate, Andy this week. We hiked to Sidi Fadma, which is supposed to be a 15 hour hike but between me being slow and us not knowing the exact path it ended up taking us quite a bit longer. We hiked for 12 hours the first day, slept on a rock by the river that night (more like froze my butt off, but whatever) and then hiked 10 hours the next day. It was a beautiful hike, but I was definatly not physically prepared for such a thing. The idea of a ‘path’ here in Morocco is not like in America, we were literally climbing up mountains and then sliding down them at a few points. And if you don’t know, I'm scared of heights, so there were a couple of panic attacks involved. But, I lived to tell the tale and that’s all that matters, right? On the hike we also met two amazing woman (they were carrying food for the cows on their backs up a mountain-literally!) but I seriously cant think of a day I’ve been here when I haven’t met amazing people- the people here inspire me everyday!
Whew- I think that’s enough for now… if you’ve got a minute write ME a message and let me know how YOU’RE doing back home, messages from home make me very happy!--- I love hearing from all of you! Love of love!

1 comment:

  1. your blog is so beautiful. That blue is my favorite color and the designs are just lovely! Talking about roughing it when hiking and back-packing ! did my share of sleeping out ,but never on a rock. You must be stiff like a board. You are lucky to have such a wonderful host family. I wish you the best for the remainder of your stint!