I am in Morocco for a week for ambiguous reasons. I will be spending my time mostly in Rabat, a very lovely city. Yesterday my lunch was some sort of Tajine, my afternoon snack was falafel and my dinner was a McChicken sandwich at McDonalds. The first was a new experience, the latter two were just amazing. This morning I ate croissants and real oranges for breakfast (despite the love affair some PCV's have with Ghana oranges I find them to be repulsive). It is very cold here... high's in the 60's lows mid-40's. I am freezing. I have grown accustomed to weather that never dips below 80.... Luckily, I brought flannel with me and the hotel where I am saying has some serious blankets (at least six inches thick).
One thing that has struck me about this city is the quiet. There are cars, there is honking, and there are many people, but compared to Ghana (where the volume always seems to be turned to 11) I feel very peaceful. Maybe it is the wide streets or the grand architecture that absorb the sound, or maybe it is a cultural difference that prevents yells from coming and going in every direction. Either way, it is a nice break.
Oh, and attending to the title of this blog's post, I don't speak french or arabic, the two languages that are spoken commonly here. I am getting by with pointing, pidgin french and the charming smile. Last night I wanted to buy soap. I went to a small store and said "soap", then did the motion indicating washing hand to which the man said "sabon?" "Yes! I mean oui! Sabon!" Repeat ad infinitum for every interaction. I have to say, it is kind of fun.