On any given Tuesday or Wednesday afternoon around 4:00 p.m., there’s an office on the third floor of Peirce, all the way at the end of the hall, that’s starting to bustle. This is the office of the Kenyon Collegian, your friendly neighborhood student-run campus newspaper since 1856.
Before Morocco, I was pretty Type A. I liked knowing what I would probably be doing next week on any given day, I liked plans, I liked staying inside the lines. I hated being late, I wasn’t a fan of change, and I didn’t go out of my way to try new things. Morocco forced a lot of that rigidity out of me.
For my second to last post from the Maghreb (I leave on the 14th!), I thought I’d write a guide to something that is an essential skill here: bargaining. I have yet to master the art of bargaining, which essentially amounts to the right combination of charm and disgust*, but I’ve come a long way since the beginning.
I realized the other morning, as I was drinking tea on my terrace and looking out over the ocean, that I’m going to miss Morocco when I leave. It was the first time I wasn’t wrapped up in being challenged or where I was headed next, and I got a serious feeling that this country had finally gotten under my skin. Maybe it’s the freedom and independence I have now that my two-month homestay is over, or maybe it was the gloriously red tomatoes I saw in the market today, but something made me suddenly wish I could rewind to that first night when I couldn’t sleep because of all the strange noises.
In the last week I’ve experienced two key cultural aspects of Morocco, both of which I was previously afraid. This first was going to the hamam, or public bath, and the second was the Muslim holiday Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice), during which families kill and eat a sheep, goat or sometimes camel.