A Glimpse of Morocco

Posted February 11th, 2013 by Breanna in Granada, Spain

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Even though I’m here in Granada to learn about Spain, the four-day excursion to Morocco is a memorable adventure that is part of the study abroad experience.  However, when my friends and family in the States ask me, “how was Morocco?”  I go blank.  So much happened in those four days that to suddenly sort through my thoughts and feelings about the trip is a monstrous task.  Since I do want to share my experience in some way, here are ten of the things that I enjoyed the most about the Morocco excursion, in no particular order.  The hammam (public bath) is not included on this list only because I don’t normally bring my camera with me when I bathe, and thus I have no pictures of it.

1. The food

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A traditional Moroccan dish is couscous with meat and vegetables piled on top.  Instead of each person serving himself a portion, everyone eats from the main dish.  Mint tea is another thing that is common in Morocco.  By tea, I mean just enough hot water to dissolve a massive amount of sugar.

2. The attention to detail

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Our guide told us that these intricate designs are a way to connect with God – it is finding the infinite in the infinitesimal.

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3. Murals

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It turns out that I’m a sucker for street art, so when we walked through the Medina of Asilah, whose residents regularly put murals on the sides of their buildings, I went a bit trigger crazy with my camera.

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4. Roman ruins

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When walking around the Roman ruins, you’re free to explore the area.  It’s like the combination of a garden and a history museum, except without the “do not touch” signs.

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5. Camel rides…on the beach

Maybe compared to the other things that we get to do, the camel rides are a tad touristy.  Not that I’d turn down an offer for another one.

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6. View of Chefchaouen

No number of photos can ever do this image justice.  If you take a hike just outside of Chefchaouen, it doesn’t take long before you’re above the city enough to see it nestled in the mountain.

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7. Rif Mountains

Another beautiful view and fun place to hike.  The other thing that I like about the Rif Mountains is that it’s outside of a city and an opportunity to see the rural side of Morocco.

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8. Getting to know young Moroccans

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Throughout the trip, there are many opportunities to talk to Moroccans about all types of subjects, from politics and religion to dating and fútbol.  This was how we learned that many Moroccans think that Americans are violent (due to our movies and recent school shooting), that it is the girl’s personal choice to wear a hijab and many go uncovered, and that Facebook is a useful tool for finding a girlfriend.

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9. Playing with children

While waiting at the meeting point, a couple of people joined a fútbol game that some kids were playing in the streets.  Although they did not speak the same language, they all knew the game and had a good time together.  By the time our group had to leave, some of the kids tried to follow us because they wanted to keep playing.

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10. Getting to know the group

After spending four intense days with thirteen other people from the group, everyone gets to know each other.  Now I have the friends that I made during orientation and the friends I made while in Morocco.

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