Hey everyone! Well, I’ve been in Morocco for a few days now and thought it was time for a little update! Tomorrow we’re off for the Sahara Desert until Thursday with a group of people Anna works with from her school. It’s been beautiful, hot, sunny, and a new experience to cruise around the organized chaos that is the streets of Casablanca! Right after Anna picked me up and we arrived at her house, we took some jumping photos on the roof, STAT! There were some pretty funny failed ones, so I thought I’d post them all for you guys to laugh at.
Although it hasn’t been easy to be away from Mikey, it’s been great to take a break and get the chance to sleep in, explore the city, catch up with Anna and her life and get a glimpse into this North African country. We went to a public bath called the “Hamam” (men with men, women with women) where you pay for someone to scrub you down in this big bath area with an almost pumice-y glove and then massage you with soap and clean you up. It clears all the dead skin off your body and while it’s tender and hurts in some areas, it’s worth it for the nice massage and clean, soft skin afterward! Many people do this at least once a week and I think I might do it again before going back to Canada…what a cool cultural experience! No photos of course, save for a quick before-pic:
(Look, Mikey – my “clown pants” fit right in here in Morocco! Love ‘em, mom!)
This morning we went for a (hot!) 5 mile run along the water and it was awesome to get a good run in! It felt great to move and since I usually run solo, I was thrilled when it was fun to run with another person – I’ll admit that I’m often wary of teaming up with other runners but would love to join a running club…maybe someday?
(Pre-run fuel: half a banana w/PB!)
(Hot and sweaty post-run, but so glad we did it – plus some funny faces.)
After a quick shower at home, we went to Anna’s French church…it was great! I loved being able to understand a little bit of the service, especially the songs when we could sing and see the words at the same time – it really helped me to comprehend more. I worked up the nerve to introduce myself as a visitor with my shaky French: “Bonjour. Je ne parle pas beaucoup de francais, mais je m’appelle Bonnie et je suis Americane mais j’habite en Canada. Je suis ici pour 10 jours pour visiter mon amie, Anna.” It was great! What a cool experience to meet with the body of Christ in another country and share that worship experience. Two moments stand out to me: 1.) When everyone jumped to their feet and started clapping and drumming and yelling and I asked Anna (“Is that for Jesus?” to which she replied “Yea!”)…awesome. 2.) A cockroach sauntered under the bench by our feet and we jumped, and a while later it scurried back towards us and a woman sitting next to me squashed it like it was no problem.
We traveled on foot to the m’dina after church, the market place inside the city walls, where we got some paninis for lunch and strolled around. If you want knock off Gucci sunglasses or imitation Nike’s, this is the place to buy them! I’ll definitely make some type of purchase their later. We taxied over to the 3rd largest mosque in the world and walked by the water but planned to go inside the mosque for a tour when we get back from the desert…
(The m’dina & mosque front.)
(Loving time with this girl!)
After some rooftop sunbathing, Anna, Kate, Lindsay & I stir fried up some fresh veggies with some rice and Mama Pea’s Mmmm Sauce…it was delicious! I highly recommend this vegan sauce – it was a hit and great to eat something tasty and nutritious.
Tomorrow bright and early we are off to the desert for a road trip and some exciting adventures. Looking forward to the markets, to going quading on the sand dunes, riding a camel, having a traditional meal, and sleeping outside in the Sahara Desert…should be a great few day road trip. I’m even bringing my TRX and hope to get a workout in (although probably not a run; I’m choosing to focus on eating well rather than moving tons although with all the jumping shots, we’re getting some good movement in!). I hope this post finds you well as you live, move, and be well with all of who you are! Have a great start to the week…until next time,