After my adventures in Spain, I decided to take a week off of traveling and just relax a little bit! But before my weekend of sleep-ins and book marathons, I had a fantastic Thanksgiving, Moroccan style! A graduate student (from the U.S. Army) here at Al Akhawayn managed to organize a Thanksgiving dinner with a local restaurant here in Ifrane on Wednesday night (the owner had lived in the states?). Of course, I signed up, but I wasn’t expecting much…perhaps some mashed potatoes and a little bit of Turkey, just a small taste of home. I couldn’t have been more wrong! For a crowd of around 25-30 people, this restaurant prepared at LEAST 8 huge turkeys, stuffing, mashed potatoes, delicious sweet potatoes, green beans, and something similar to Indian-style naan bread. I ate until it hurt to eat more…and then we had cake! It was absurdly good, and given my increasing homesickness it was exactly what I needed to tide me over for the next month. And Friday afternoon, a group of American guys got together and played some good old American football. While it was obviously nothing compared to the (in)famous Cebul Mud Bowl, it was awesome to share the experience with the other exchange students. We even got some Moroccans to join for a bit!
|Chris and I, eating our pre-meal Salad.|
|One of many birds. Heaven on a plate.|
|Our group--we got funny looks from Moroccan patrons, but it was totally worth it.|
|Drew Webster and I, lookin' classy for Thanksgiving.|
This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for all of the wonderful friends that I have shared this semester with in one way or another, of all nationalities, and the incredible opportunities I have had to explore the world this semester. I am thankful for my family and friends at home, who I cannot wait to see again, and yes, I am thankful for my unexpectedly glorious Thanksgiving feast. Indeed, if my semester abroad has given me one thing, it is a better perspective about what I should be thankful for in this world, and the people and things that I should never take for granted! I truly am lucky to enjoy the life that I do, and for that I am eternally grateful.
I miss all of you—last stop on my tour-de-Arab is Egypt in a few weeks, and then it will be back to the Wootown!
Word of the Day: فرصة سعيدة. In Darija, this phrase means “nice to meet you”, but it literally translates into “happy opportunity”, of which I have had many!