The Brrd

“Brrd” in Darija means cold, and this week has been pretty cold. I think it may actually be the coldest week we’ve had in Morocco so far. The high today was about 44 F, both inside and outside. Luckily, the rest of the winter has been relatively warm and it’s supposed to warm up again in a couple days. But I wanted to share with you some of my favorite and least favorite things about the cold.

My least favorite things:

  • Washing my hands. We do have a water heater, but it takes long enough to turn on that it seem silly to turn it on for something that takes so little time. So I wash my hands in cold water, and it’s awful.
  • Sitting on the toilet seat. The shock of the cold seat is just terrible, especially since I do a pretty good job of keeping myself warm while I’m at home. It’s times like these when I wish we had a squat toilet instead of a Western (and that’s something I pretty much never wish).
  • Getting out of bed and changing clothes is really, really hard. Additionally, I think I could sleep like 15 hrs per night if I let myself. I do not like feeling so lazy.
  • Doing anything with my hands, like typing, writing, crocheting, cooking, or playing guitar. It’s hard to get your fingers to move right, and after a while they just hurt. My solution is to just not do them. Matt’s solution is more admirable:

Matt sitting in the one patch of sun in the room

Matt sitting in the one patch of sun in the room

My favorite things:

  • “It’s too cold” becomes a legitimate excuse for everything. I’m pretty sure I could skip work and tell my supervisors this and they’d be fine with it (no, I have not tried it, give me some credit).
  • The old men wear these big hooded cape-like things to keep warm outside, and younger men start wearing jellabas (traditional robe-type garments). In warmer weather traditional Moroccan clothing isn’t as popular, so I love seeing that people still wear it in everyday life in the winter.
  • Getting all bundled up inside. Today I’m wearing thermal underwear top and bottom, pants, two sweaters, gloves, a hat, and a blanket on top of all that. It’s very cozy! Plus it’s fun to count the layers and feel absolutely ridiculous.
  • The snow on the mountains in the distance is gorgeous. When it snows in town it’s even prettier, but I don’t have any good pictures of that.


– Cori