Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summer Begins

Hooray ! I finally decided to buy an external keyboard that I can just hook up to my lap top, :). It’s so nice to finally be able to type at home again. It’s a French keyboard with Arabic symbols, but that’s ok. Getting very used to the French keyboard anyway and I sometimes have the need to type in Arabic. My lap top still has a few issues due to the heat, dust, etc. and only minimally cfunctions at the moment, but I can wait and have those issues fixed when I take my trip to Iowa. My dvd player doesn’t always function very well, but it is mainly when I use Moroccan burned dvds, my American ones work fine and I think it just needs cleaned.

I was able to hang out with a couple pcvs this past weekend, so that was nice. Visited my host family and my counterpart. My women are working in the fields until Thursday, so not too much going on this week in that arena. I am considering planning a small summer day camp in my site this summer, just depends on many factors. I think it would be really fun. The volunteer before me did a travelling summer camp between her site and a few other volunteers and think that would be an amazing thing to do myself. Unfortunately I didn’t think about it until now as life has been so crazy. I will attempt to plan something for next summer. I have a few friends who would be interested in helping and a volunteer near me who helped the volunteer last year that I can gain some insight and advice from. I have plenty of camp experience, ;). Otherwise just planning to assist my cooperative women with getting funding to purchase or build their own building and general business practices such as budget planning; product development; etc. My counterpart is also going to teach me the moroccon form of embroidery called tirz d fasi. Very excited.

tirz d fasi is moroccan for fasi embroidery. This is basically just the typical Moroccan pattern they use on tea covers, bed covers, pillow vovers, etc. Generally they use the colors red, green or black. Below is a photo of a bedsheet cover using tirz d fasi. I am very excited to begin learning, :).

Summer is warming up, been getting a few summer rains and almost daily wind/thunder stroms. I love listening to the storms. I might turn my upstairs room into a summer bedroom, just need to purchase a ponge to put up there. Going to try to plan a few trips to more northern sites in the next two months so I can get out of the heat a bit. Might celebrate 4th of July somewhere.

Had my first experience in getting my buta gas tank replaced. My buta gas tank went out on Saturday, so as I have no wrench or anything to unconnect it I went to my host family’s house and asked my host brother if he could do it for me. He owns a hanut store and sells buta gas, so very nice. I can now begin baking away again. My mom just sent me a Pillsbury Best Desserts cookbook, so sweets will be the highlight of my summer existance, haha. I hope to start baking with some of my moroccan friends. They would absolutely love my new cookbook.

My mom also sent me my clarinet, so excited! I just need to start practicing again, boy am I out of "shape". Which also reminds me that I need to start working out again as well.

Another little exciting tid bit, well to me anyway, I saw a herd of camels in the dessert across from my house today. Apparently nomads herd them around me. Had no idea. I'll try to take a photo sometime, didn't have my camera with me in the taxi.

Well, I hope to update this a bit more often and include some more cultural information. At the moment I am going to go swimming for a bit at the local hotel with a friend. So excited, :).

nshufk mn b3d! نشوفك من بعر (see you later)

Thursday, June 18, 2009


I returned about 4 days ago from a training in Marrakech. It was awesome. The first two days of training weren't so great, but it was really nice to see friends I hadn't seen in 6 months. We also had access to an AMAZING swimming pool even if we were far from downtown kech. Staying up till 1am and getting up around 8am was exhausting, but worth it. On the way to Kech I was able to stay the night in Ouarzazate and get some new summer clothes, very light and flowy caftan/jallaba things. Also while in Kech I got to eat amazing sushi! I was so excited. Also had Pizza Hut one night, had to have my american pizza, and ate in the jma fna one night, the downtown kech market area near the mosque.

Before Kech my cat was very good and killed a scorpion for me, :). I woke up to a dead one in my kitchen. Been dealing with way too many bugs lately. Darn beetles seem to be everywhere. Cockroaches are scary over here, very large. Luckily I haven't seen too many. And my roof has been dropping bits of rock lately. Praying it's just the heat and nothing is actually living up there. That's a scary thought. Other than the scary house issues, life is good. Cooled down to about 90F this week, but it'll only warm up again very soon.

Attempting to plan some inter-morocco travel or a short trip to Europe this summer before my trip back to Iowa. Not sure when or where yet. Somewhere I could swim would be great.

Otherwise not too much going on at the moment. Women have been out in the fields so not too much coop wise happening this week. Still working on getting my lap top keyboard fixed. Inchallah soon. Some exciting news, my host sister just got married. Unfortunately due to my need to travel to Kech I was unable to go, :(. But I may get to go to a wedding in Midelt for the cousin of my tutor, that would be fun. We've now hit wedding season, I hear the music weekly these days. My tutor just did very well on her Bac, so she will be leaving this fall to go to school. Sad she'll be leaving, but happy that she did so well.

As the weather warms up, people have begun taking afternoon naps and staying up much later. We had a time change, but I do not believe it is being observed by my village. We now have what I call "old time" and "new time". It makes life interesting, haha. I'll be glad when this time change goes away around August 20th, right before Ramadan starts.

I attempted to make scones the other day. Didn't quite turn out as I'd hoped they would, but I have plenty of time to try again. Well, I should go do my shopping for the weekend.

Hope to have a more exciting update soon.