Falling in Love in Morocco

On the African continent in the country of Morocco, in the village of Safrou lives a Shepherd named Selim with his wife Khadjia, his son Fouad, and his daughters Zahara, Fatima, and Hanane. Oddly enough, recently there has been a new addition to the household, a shiftless American vagobond.

Yes, I am staying here for a while. Hanane is teaching me Moroccan Arabic, in the evenings I sit around the fire outside next to the sheep pen with the family. Khadija sings songs of her deceased mother, the family gathers around the television to watch football or Bollywood films, we eat chicken, french fries, fuul and couscous. We sing, we laugh, and all of this while sitting around a charcoal burning pot in the living room with a blanket over all of our laps and the pot in the center providing heat to join our good company.

I was going to leave yesterday, because of this travel itch, but I was unable to, and tears of sadness turned to tears of joy. This has moved beyond couch surfing and into the realm of life happens when you make other plans. In any event, I am not in a hurry. In a way, I am doing field work which is what my degree in Anthropology prepared me for, in a way, I am seeing if this is that Shire I was looking for, and then, there are other factors.

As to the green coat, time will tell, I was simply walking in the souks and saw one I liked.

I never expected to find a place in Africa that fit me so well.

I think I’m in love. What is this going to mean for my travels?

(Originally poste 12 February 2009)