Farewell to the little red car

A major item has been crossed off my Morocco pre-departure to-do checklist: my little red car has been sold.

The Little Red Car

Opa and I standing with the little red car in 2009 when I first bought it.

Even though I’m not leaving until January, the parking situation at the house wouldn’t accommodate off-street parking for all the vehicles currently in use here and I was planning to sell it anyway before leaving. That being said, letting go of the cutest and most adorable car in existence – the first one I bought by myself, the one that carried me through snowstorms, to all varieties of accidents, fires, and interviews for work, and started reliably even on the coldest of mornings – well, it wasn’t entirely happy.

But it did sell to someone who was excited about owning it, so it’s really better than putting it into storage for two years while I’m in Morocco. Yay for Craigslist.

Today will also mark day two of “Johanna learns Arabic.” Peace Corps sent out a lovely set of language lessons yesterday, so I’m back to learning the alphabet. I figured that might be a good place to start because that also breaks down the typical sounds you find in the language. So, bearing in mind that I know almost nothing about Arabic, here’s what I’ve learned thus far:

  •  28 letters
  • Arabic reads right to left, which is taking some mental gymnastics on my part to wrap my head around
  • Arabic is written with all the letters connected, much like cursive in English, so the letters look slightly different depending on where they are placed within the word.
  • The R sound is done with a roll, like in Spanish. Bad news. I’ve never been able to roll my Rs.

Time to bust out the flash cards.

Language training is one of the things I’m most looking forward to for the 11 weeks of training I’ll be starting in January. If you have words, you can do anything.

And as a final random realization for the morning, as I am no longer bound to follow AP style while writing, I am free to start using the Oxford comma. It’s the little things.

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Categories: Pre-departure | Tags: , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Farewell to the little red car

  1. Andrea Parker

    Give the Arabic Sounds and Letters by Prof. Rammuny at UofM a look (maybe you can ILL it rather than spending the $30?):

    http://www.amazon.com/Arabic-Sounds-Letters-Beginning-Programmed/dp/0916798038/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1350578482&sr=8-7&keywords=raji+rammuny

    It’s a great primer on the letters, how to pronounce them, how to begin writing Arabic, etc.

    After that, I’d highly recommend the Al-Kitaab series; although it’s a MSA and not Maghrebi course, you’ll be able to pick up high-frequency words with the first volume of Al-Kitaab:

    http://www.amazon.com/Al-Kitaab-allum-Arabiyya-Second-Edition/dp/158901104X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1350578508&sr=8-2&keywords=al+kitaab

    Enjoy! 😀

    • Oo! Thanks! I’ll look into those! How many years did you take Arabic?

      • Andrea Parker

        UofM offers a year of a language crammed into eight weeks in the Summer term and I enrolled in that! Very intense and (at least I found for Arabic) kind of overwhelmingly fast! The whole Al-Kitaab I book in eight weeks! Oof! Just practice a bit each day and I’m sure you’ll retain a lot and be able to work through the book by the time you depart! 😀

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