Tag Archives: family



You know, sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m not an island, and that people actually read/enjoy this blog because human experiences are nearly always shared. Also, sometimes I wonder if this entire blog is me just writing sappy girly dear-diary posts, because for some godforsaken reason I feel the need to share my feelings publicly on the Internet. Am I actually just some monstrous sentimentality-machine?! WHY CAN’T I ALWAYS BE WITTY?!?!?!


Olivia and the Thief

Last night, Olivia, Rose, and a couple Moroccan host brothers and I hung out. We went to coffee and watched Moroccan Boys chain smoke their way through an entire pack of cigarettes, shoe-shopped our way through the medina, visited the ocean, and then parted ways for a bit: Moroccan Boys to coffee with other Moroccan Boys (probably at a man-café), American girls off to find dinner and maybe a bottle of wine.

On our way back through the very, very crowded souk, a man (typical skinny, mid-20s Moroccan dude, probably wearing a pair of tight acid-wash jeans) ran into Olivia going the other way. I was walking closely behind her and saw the whole thing; it was a classic medina collision, seen it a million times before, and I never thought twice about ’em. She had barely passed him when suddenly, she whirled around as the two jerked to a stop—holding hands?! For a moment, I didn’t understand why, and then I spotted what held them together: Olivia’s wallet, clenched in both fists. During the split second in which I realized what was happening, I looked up into his eyes, full in the face, and received what can only be described as an extremely shocked death glare. Olivia wrenched her wallet out of his hand, to the varied exclamations of the Moroccan onlookers (also barely realizing what was going on), and he booked it out of there. We kept walking.

Then we began to understand what had just transpired. You just took your wallet back from a pickpocketer! YOU ARE SUCH A BADASS! WHAAAAAAAAT THE EEEEEFFFFFFFFF JUST HAPPENNNNNNNED?!?!! HOLY SHIT HOLY SHIT WHAT?! WUT. OLIVIA IS A TOTAL BOSS. YOU JUST DESTROYED A PICKPOCKETER. GIRL.

So, kids, keep your hands on your valuables if they’re in your pockets. Zip up your bags. Clip’em. Velcro ’em. I checked for my coin purse (funny joke, I have about 3.20dh in there anyway) just afterwards, and was relieved to find it still there. I tightened the straps on my trusty rusty hipster timbuk2 bag that I found for 6 dollars at Value Village, and continued to marvel over Olivia’s catlike reactions and nerves of steel.

We exclaimed all the way to a seedy-looking Italian restaurant and ordered what turned out to be a huge pitcher of really good Sangria (we will be returning to this seedy-looking Italian restaurant with good bread) and talked about our lives. Then, on our ways to our respective homes, we told Moroccan Boys what had happened in excited-and-therefore-far-less-eloquent French.

Good job Olivia. As for me, I’m going to keep zippering my pockets and tightening the straps.

Oh, yeah, That American Life

This isn’t so much a story as a hey-this-is-what-I-do-sometimes. At home, I listen to This American Life; it’s my go-to distraction while doing chores, cooking, walking, bathing, pooping, you name it. You’re welcome, Ira Glass, for plugging your show. Anyway, I hadn’t listened to any since coming here, until I found myself with some (gasp) real alone time, during which I could have studied but instead re-folded clothes and listened to a show from 1999 that spoke to my current halfway-done-but-more-directionless-than-ever feeling: You Are Here.

If you’ve never listened to This American Life before, you’re welcome.


It’s something like that I’m pretty sure

Last night, we celebrated Wided and Abir’s birthday party. Moroccans love a good party, lemme tell ya! Cake, candy, lemon tarts everywhere, the LOUDEST music blasting from the tiny room on the rooftop terrace, dancing, Bastilla (YUMYUMYUMOMG YUUUUM), dancing, and posing for photos. Did I mention dancing?

Happy 13th to my girls!!! Left to right: Jalal, Abir, Me, Wided, and Jamila: proud mama looking mighty fine. Also, most of these photos were taken by Wided or Abir. I usually hand my camera off to them right away because they take thousands of pictures with wild abandon, and I love that.

There’s this type of Moroccan dance involving a lot of very-fast stomping, and it’s called…um…a name that I can’t pronounce, but sounds something like drg-gig-dig-a-rd-dig…I think. It’s hard to do when you have no idea what you’re doing and Houria is really, really good at it, but bucketfuls of fun to try!

Also, Moroccans don’t consider anything repetitive or silly. We sang Happy Birthday, in Arabic, French, and English, about 897 times. Who effing cares if we already did?! IT’S A PARTY. OF COURSE WE’RE GOING TO BLOW THE CANDLES OUT, LIGHT THEM AGAIN, AND BLOW THEM OUT AGAIN. DUH.

ALSO, pastilla. It’s freaking delicious. Jamila made ours with a sweet chicken filling, and HOLY CRAP YUUUM

And we ate it with our hands, like we do everything here. I don’t like eating with forks anymore, it takes too much effort and concentration.


You can tell why she’s so distracting.