Friday, August 22, 2008


I'm back! It feels as though I've been away for a long time. Well, I have! First, Mdiq, on the Mediterranean. Then to Rabat for COS conference - as I'd heard, lots of reflection and lots of paperwork to do. Plus some time for evening walks, and dinners out - the picture is from the Chellah; I had been there with Martha, Susan and Youssef and was happy when some of my PCV friends wanted to walk there on our last evening together. Then, a combination of my last vacation days and three holidays gave me the opportunity to go far south - Taroudant, Sidi Ifni, Tafraoute, Taliouine, Tazenacht and Skoura. I'll write about all of those as I catch up, but in the meantime, here is some haiku - a non-comprehensive list of some of the things I will miss...

The call to prayer
Dates, pomegranates and figs
Labas? Hamdullah!

My patisserie
Spending hours at cafes
Ns-ns, a3fak, thanks

The artisana
The weavers of Ain Leuh, too
Abdou’s carpet shop

Filling a taxi
Asking for window handles
Yalla, bismillah

Vegetable stand guy
Hanut guy, carosa guy
Teleboutique guy

Squeegeeing the floor
The joy of a hot shower
Clothes line-dry outside

Creative cooking
Fresh ingredients – and time
Vache qui rit, red ball

Shuffling, dealing cards
More PCVs coming through

Couscous on Fridays
Double chocolate Magnum bars
My host families

Travel far and wide
Coast, desert, city, gorges
Shopping, eating, walks

Phrases I will use
Inshallah, masi mushkil
This does feel like home

Things, people I’ll miss
Getting sentimental now….
Safi, baraka

I should also mention that since last wrote there was a coup in Mauritania - the volunteers were put on standfast, which is one of the steps in the Emergency Action Plan we reviewed at the Warden Conference. It basically means you stay at your site and await further news - and they have since been given the all-clear and are back at work. More seriously, the volunteers in Georgia have been temporarily relocated to Armenia, awaiting further word on the situation there. There were no PCVs serving in South Ossetia.

And a P.S. - Debbie wrote that as she was catching up, she read perhaps the most shocking thing I have written yet - that there were people at the warden conference who had never heard of Barbra Streisand. Yes, sometimes I am reminded that I am not of the same generation as most of the PCVs here and that cultural exchange is not just between the Americans and the Moroccans. As we were watching the concert, some of the women admired Streisand's son, who is probably in his mid-20s by now. Meanwhile, I was looking at her son's father, Elliott Gould, who I always thought was kinda cute....

Glad you're back! I hope all is well.
It is! I feel out of touch though - it really was a getaway! Need to write not only here but some personal emails too! Hope all is well there too!
HI, Sharon,

When do you leave Morocco? Wow these 2 years have gone by fast. It sounds like it has been a rich experience for you. Where will you go in the US? I'm sure Morocco will remain in your heart forever!


Cindy Baker
I finish on November 26 - and yes, this has gone by quickly and I will be sad to leave. The past year especially has been rewarding, and I love my apartment and my town and the people and thefresh fruits and vegetables and the lifestyle here. I am not sure what is next - but you're right, this will always be another home. Thanks for getting in touch!
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