Things seem to be moving pretty quickly these days. Finally having a regular schedule at the Dar Chabab (youth center) has helped a lot. Nikki and I have five classes between the two of us, and we would like to expand from there once we get a better understanding of school schedules in town. I now teach Beginner English twice a week with a consistent group of about 15 to 20 kids and a Fitness Class for teenage girls. Nikki teaches Advanced English, working with a group of youth that is preparing for their BAC Exam. We have both needed to get creative with our teaching methods due to the lack of supplies available. For example, I made a set of Bingo boards out of old cereal boxes as a fun way to have my students practice their English letters, dried chickpeas were used as space holders. At the Dar Chabab we use a small room that we have dubbed as our English Class space. All the room has is a few chairs, a white board, and some tables that we carry in from outside. Everything else we have to bring for ourselves; books, pens, pencils, paper, games etc.
Our Dar Chebab
For Thanksgiving my housemate Nikki and I went to Errachidia. Errachidia is a larger city located East of the mountains on the edge of the Sahara and is home to our training friends Nick and Brittany. A bunch of other volunteers from the area were invited too and combined we had a giant potluck! The combination and variety of food was wonderful, and there was plenty of it! I was basically consuming calories for 24 hours straight with a brief break for sleeping. The meal consisted of: Chicken (turkeys are expensive), roasted ginger carrots, eggplant parm, roasted cauliflower, corn bread, Greek salad, mixed corn and green beans, mashed potatoes, creamy mac and cheese, French fries, cranberry sauce, carrot cake, pumpkin pie, apple pie, chocolate cake balls, and zucchini bread. The group of us spent our time playing board games, singing Christmas songs, complimenting each other’s souk sweaters, and talking about travel plans for Christmas. It was like having a mini vacation to America!
Getting ready for our feast!
The table, and Nick cutting his chicken
Our very own Peace Corps Thanksgiving carrot cake!
On our way home from Errachidia, Nikki and I met some travelers on the bus, a couple from Spain and a guy from Germany. They were headed towards Azrou/Fez and didn’t have a place to stay for the night so we invited them to crash with us. They ended up staying for two nights so that they could look around Azrou and see the monkeys. As a thank you, Nikki and I were well fed with traditional Spanish cooking.
Dinner with our visitors
As far as news at my home goes, Nikki and I have adopted two new pets! A little black kitten and a tiny puppy. The kitten is named Moosh (the local Berber word for cat) and the puppy is named Kika (the Darija word for cake). They have both been a lot of work so far because they are so young but they are great to have around. Nikki and I will just be lacking a lot of sleep until they are older.