We’ve been in Taounete for a couple days now. The first couple days it was so rainy that the valleys and mountains surrounding us were completely covered by fog. We didn’t actually get a good look at the town until the day before yesterday; before that whenever we would walk somewhere we’d have our heads bent down because of the rain. But yesterday we finally saw the sun, and the town definitely lived up to expectations. See the view of the city from a nearby hill below.
Our host family, however, has provided us plenty of warmth (and warm food!) to compensate for the initial rainy weather. Mama Naima and our host siblings have been so generous and happy to see us that we’ve felt welcome since the second we walked in the door. Mama Naima is an excellent cook and so far mealtimes are the highlight of the day. We’re really looking forward to getting to spend more time with the family, and having our Darija improve enough to where we can actually talk to them (instead of our current vocabulary of Hello! Good! Very good! I’m tired. Goodbye!)
Language classes are getting a little more intense. 3 hours in the morning and 2-3 hours again in the afternoon means we have a lot to study every night. It’s going slowly right now but we have high hopes that soon we’ll settle into the rhythm of things and start to really notice some improvement. Soon we’ll begin observing classes at the youth center and we’ll start to plan and teach our own. We’ve gotten a couple chances to hang out with the kids there already – Matt really enjoyed playing some ping-pong with a couple Moroccans yesterday… it’s hard work but someone’s gotta do it. Looking forward to an afternoon off today – Mama Naima told us she’d teach us how to make Moroccan bread! We’ll report back with the recipe next week, hopefully. Bslama!
Cori and Matt