The End of The First Week

2011.09.14 by Josh Erb; 399 words.

A rather funny thing has been happening to me lately. I'll wake up in the morning, look out my window, and realize that I am in Morocco. It's kind of a funny feeling actually, some days it's a realization that coincides with a sharp prick of panic. While on other more adventurous days it's something that I decide to embrace completely. Of course these two reactions are interchangeable and tend to replace each other multiple times throughout the day.

As of right now I have finished the fifth day of two weeks of intensive Moroccan Arabic, for a total of twenty hours of class time. The language school we (the other study abroad students and I) have been attending is quaint and for all intents and purposes well run. However, this does not change the fact that the human brain was not built to learn a language in two weeks. Everyday I go to school at 2:00pm and everyday I leave school at 6:00pm feeling like my brain is about to start leaking out of my ears.

Arabic School a.k.a. Qalam wa Lawh

Aside from that, there's not much more to report on at the moment. My days here have been filled with countless cups of mint tea, multiple pickup games of soccer, and seemingly endless hours of Moroccan Arabic. My actual classes won't start for another week and half, so it's too early to say what my life will entail as soon as I am able to acquire some semblance of control over its daily aspects. One major accomplishment that I experienced recently was a successful solo trip on Moroccan public transportation, Rabat's number 30 bus to be exact.

Otherwise, life here is still up in the air. There are many things I don't understand and many things I'm not aware of not understanding. But, with time all these things will become clear. The language is tough, and attempting to speak with my host family from time to time in Arabic brings back memories of awkward misunderstandings and half understood instructions from my exchange in France. At the outset of my time here, it seems nearly impossible to achieve fluency in Arabic. Hopefully time will change this, but until then thanks for lending me yours.

The beautiful vista from my home-stay's balcony

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