Morocco 2012: Introduction

So this summer I went to Morocco, and I had a big plan about how I was going to post here and all that which I am, half a year later, finally doing.

What I’m actually going to do it transfer the contents of my book (that I’m making for my Grandma using Booksmart from Blurb which is actually a super great program most of the time, I suggest it) to a blog. Things will be organized by place and therefore loosely by time.

We’ll start with my introductions, which will serve as a sort explanation of what I did:

“I visted Morocco in the Summer of 2012 and when I got on the plane I had absolutely no idea what to expect, I was terrified, exited, nervous, and thrilled all at the same time. I knew my Study Abroad program through Marquette and AmidEast would teach me a lot, and academically I learned so much. However I learned much more valuable lessons from the people I met, the conversations I held, and the lasting memories I made than I ever did in the classroom.

During my trip I visted the cities of Rabat, Sale, Fez, Moulay Idriss, Meknes, Casablanca, Marrakech, Ourazazete, and Zagora, as well as staying overnight in the Moroccan Sahara. Each of these cities had a distinct personality, but common themes connected them all. Hospitality, kindness, and friendliness.

My goal with these photos is to show the spirit of each city, while also sharing my own experiences. I’ll share my memories as I share the photos. Hopefully I have leave some echo of the profound experience I had in Morocco on these pages.”

This is the Cover of the Book (it’s a little short because I edited my name out) but you need to see it for the next bit of text to make sense.”

“As with many countries the name ‘Morocco’ the moniker by which the United States designates the North African country is not the name that it’s natives (or neighbors) use.

They call it the infinetely more romantic “Maghrib.” In Arabic this means “evening” and is often used in Islam to refer to the evening prayer that occurs just after sunset.

If you imagine where Morocco is on a map (on the western most tip of North Africa) you might see why this is the name the invading Arabs gave to the area when they arived in the early 6th and 7th centuries. Arriving from the East, and coming to the Maghrib–which borders the vast Atlantic Ocean–this was the essential end of the line. This is the land on which sun set.

In many ways this title is more literal, almost no markets open until the sun begins to set (and some don’t open until well after), and for many moroccans the sunset or twilight period is the most social and active part of their day. They get their shopping done, they meet their friends (or boyfriends), and they relax until the next day.

And that’s the story of Morocco’s beautiful name, and the explanation for the title of my book. Many of my memories of Morocco are lit with the hazy golden light of a sunset. “

Here I’ve added the two other pictures from the first few pages of the book (behind the text mainly).

Sunset

A sunset from the cliff view in the Oudaya of Rabat.

Enter in...

A doorway in to the Casbah portion of Rabat.

The next post will be soon! I hope you enjoyed this one. I know it’s a little picture-light, the next one will have many more, I promise.

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