personal day: highs and a low

Posted in Uncategorized by Diana on June 6, 2010

I want to get my sleeping schedule back. I’ve been going to bed around 2:00am these past few days. It’s starting to throw off my early-to-rise mornings.

“Ur tsnt weh-lu.”

– Host grandmother, regarding my comprehension of Tashleheit. The irony behind that sentence is that it’s a double negative.

When I got up this morning, I knew today would be more of a personal day. Half of my host family went on a two-week vacation – best present they could ever give me! It was so tranquil during that period. Well, they returned yesterday.

The children lack basic hygiene. Their face and hands are constantly dirty and sticky. They put nearly everything in their mouth. They touch everything with their food-stuck, oily fingers. Other details intentionally omitted.

I couldn’t stand it anymore so I brought them a gift, the same one I gave my CBT host family. At the risk of being offensive (which I actually don’t think it turned out that way), I presented them with a bottle of hand soap. It has a hand-pump and the soap is a deep blue color. I explained the purpose – and importance – of hand washing with soap to the adults. I used it once with the kids yesterday.

Today, the kids took to it more. Before lunch, I asked for the soap to wash my hands. I’m baffled as to why the bottle was placed in the TV room. Then again, at least it was in an accessible place…(perhaps?) Anyway, when the kids saw the bottle of blue soap, they readily presented their dirty hands, ready to wash before eating. YAY!

They were ready to wash their hands after lunch too! I enjoyed showing them how to wash their hands – not just all around the palms but in between their fingers too.


– girls complementing my “new” ‘do (and understanding my explanation! :))

I went over to the neighbor’s house, hoping I could help resolve the computer problem. The father took it to the next town over for a repair yesterday. Mashi musqil, I’ll just hang out with the children. I kept the oldest daughter company as she prepared lunch and played with the youngest boy.

I was there for a couple hours. Before I knew it, my time there turned into a mini-English lesson on greetings and family. I actually really enjoyed it.

When lunch came around, their mother insisted I stay for lunch. “No thank you,” I said, “it’s lunch time next door, too. I told my host family I’d be back for dinner. I’ll have lunch here next time.” I truly didn’t expect that to happen. I didn’t want to impose; besides, my host family gets paid to feed and house me. We went back and forth, she insisting and I declining the invitation. Finally, she reached a compromise for us (hahaha) – she prepared me a big plate of food to take back to the house.

Seriously, Moroccan hospitality at its nicest.

I was tempted to stay in my room all day but, I’m glad I didn’t. I got out of my room and out of the house, walked around the village, saw a third place for rent, and ended my day at the taounia.


– the name an old woman at the taounia calls me because she has trouble remembering my name. I’d be annoyed if I didn’t find it humorous and slightly endearing

There weren’t many women working but I still got to work a bit. I sorted seeds from shells. Maybe that’ll be my task there since I’m ever so slow at cracking the shells. I finally got to see the defruiting machine! The man who operates it was so nice when he demonstrated how it works.


2 Responses

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  1. richard yan said, on June 12, 2010 at 6:50 pm

    translate words pleaseeeee. xie xie.

    today is calvin’s graduation and the celebration party for calvin, christina and annie. we’re doing it at calvin’s house and we’re having tons of vietnamese and chinese food – its insane.

    did you hire someone to write these blog entries for you?! seriously! why do my writing skills suck and yours rock. this is not part of our family gene pool. you must be outsourcing this to some moroccan. writing is amazing. i’m going to keep reading.

    miss ya!

    • nauticalgal said, on June 13, 2010 at 6:19 am

      Please eat lots of food for me and tell everyone hello and all is well! Sad I’m missing this milestone of theirs, please congratulate them for me!

      It’s a relief that someone thinks my writing is on par with standard American English. I speak grammatically-poor English most of the time here. I write entries on Word before bed and post on my blog whenever I have internet.

      Keep the comments coming!

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