I have been home for about 36 hours after the trips we took here and there. Time to shift gears a little bit. For one I need to start making something out of the information that was gathered. For another I am going to be on my own fairly soon. The fun months are over and tourists will soon be returning to this beautiful kingdom and my BB (Berber buddy) will soon be back on the road for the majority of the time. I am trying to get my head around this shift and putting some pieces in place so that I can prepare for what will be a big change for me.
I will be alone again for the majority of my time. I will not have immediate help with local language. I will probably start to get really homesick as a result of this. It’s been almost a month since I arrived so the glow will soon wear off. All things I have anticipated before even leaving Canada, and I am prepared with a plan. Of course.
So today I woke up and did some work this morning. Had a friend over lunch and then decided to set out on some errands. My days are really no different here than they were in Canada. It’s just that things are friendly feeling and a lot of people speak a different language.
We have been discussing the whole idea of “bumping into people”. My BB is pretty popular and very friendly so it seems no matter where we go or what we are doing there are frequent stops to chat with people. As it turns out, I have the same mojo. I was signing up for a local gym membership the other day, and I ran smack into a local friend of mine. What are the chances? Apparently pretty good in this tiny little town of nearly 1 million. I lived in Calgary when it was the same size I never met anyone I knew. Ever. But Marrakech has a pretty micro “downtown” where all the good stuff is. So it’s to be expected. Today I was walking along the street and ran into my friend Kate. (Quite possibly the only other person I know here). So that’s a nice feeling. Knowing that friendly faces are not far away.
And just like home I had to do some errands. Stopped by the bank. Went on a hunt for a surge protector for my laptop which I have come to realize is important and possibly urgent. I walked down to a place that I remembered was near the liquor store where Laura I went in October. I found it and talked to them and found sort of what I needed but not quite. The nice man directed me to some place different. Waving his right arm, quite clearly to the right, telling me to turn left at the next street. (It’s a thing here apparently). But I never found the store. I did however fill in more of my mental map as I wandered the back streets and then ended up right where I wanted to be.
I hit the grocery store “downtown” because the one next to my house doesn’t carry peanut butter. I found it at the Carrefour of course. They seem to have everything. But I can only get a tiny little itty bitty jar of it. I can get a gallon drum of Nutella in 12 different brands. But peanut butter? Not so much. It’s tasty though and since I seem to be shopping every day it’s not a big deal.
I learned today that the Starbucks is open during Ramadan. I’m not sure if I will be here for that but it’s a good note to keep. I also learned of a highly guarded secret stash of western food that may or may not include Campbell’s soup which is probably and oddly the one thing I miss the most. Good to know if things get really bad.
So aside from the fact that it’s 78 degrees, sunny for miles (I’m not sure I have seen a a cloud since I arrived), and I need to walk everywhere and rely on Goolge translate, my days here are not unlike my days in Canada.