Monday, September 14, 2009

Last Thoughts From The Shore

So it is Monday night here on the Moroccan coast and our hosts are sitting down to Iftur (Break the Fast, not to be confused with Breakfast). It is my last night before traveling to my Community Based Training site (CBT) up in the mountains east of Fez. I am really pleased about my location because it is supposed to be beautiful, beautiful but cold. It is really high up and we may see snow before our nine weeks of language training are over. So tomorrow all sixty-three Peace Corps Trainees (PCTs) are splitting up into two groups: Youth Development and Small Business Development. From there we are splitting up even more into groups of six and a language teacher. All of the PCTs are living with a host family, which is really exciting. My family consists of a Mom, Son (15) and Daughter (13). Should be an adventure. I am really looking forward to fasting with them for the last five days of Ramadan.
            The highlight for me today was probably our language class. I must say when I took a quarter off to learn German in Germany I really thought I would be fluent and be able to read Harry Potter in Deutsch. Boy was I wrong. However, I never imagined that experience would be so helpful in learning Arabic three years latter. I know that I am doing way better now as the result of that then I would be doing otherwise. But what I was pleased about today is I had my language teacher write down everything we were learning IN Arabic, rather then just writing down the transliteration. Of course I have no idea how to write in Arabic, but lo, when I asked some staff members if they could read my completely unpracticed chicken scratch attempt at Arabic, turns out, it was totally legible. That was pleasing.
            So I am leaving tomorrow which means I don’t know the next time I will be able to have internet. It is going to be infrequent over the next two months but I hope I will be able to provide updates on how things are going.

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