Sept. 1, 2013

Home again, home again, jiggity jog.

I’m in the middle of a brief 48-hour layover in my apartment in between a mini-camp session, an awesome training in Rabat and then busing of for another training in the east. It’s been a crazy 10 days or so, and I’m feeling really excited about work starting up again this month. It’s nice to be busy, really really nice.

Anyway, a week or so ago, just after getting back from the big summer camp, my friend Leah (here’s her blog: http://leahthesandpiper.wordpress.com/) and I traveled slightly south from Agadir down the coast to arrive in M–, where another two volunteers live and work. One of them, Eva, had organized a mini-camp at her Dar Chabab: two hours a day of activities focusing on English and nutrition.

Me, the kids, and our art project - a paper quilt.

Me, the kids, and our art project – a paper quilt.

Leah and I arrived on time to observe the Thursday session, then came back Friday and Saturday with activities of our own, including measuring out the total amount of sugar found in a typical diet here. It’s a lot. We talked about food-related vocabulary, did an art project, hung out with some amazing girls. It was pretty fun.

Eva’s site is unique because her town is situated on a river. With actual water in it. And that’s weird, because we have a river in T—, but I haven’t seen water in it. There’s a road running down the middle of ours. Anyway, M– has water, and that means it’s very very green all of a sudden.

Just a guy pulling himself across the river.

Just a guy pulling himself across the river.

Three Moroccan ladies out for an evening walk by the river.

Three Moroccan ladies out for an evening walk by the river.

The river is actually part of a big wildlife/bird preserve and national park, and one of my ulterior motives for going to help out at the camp was the find out how to get to the park and then entice my bird-watching relatives to come visit. Because why visit your favorite niece/cousin if you can’t see a bald ibis as part of the deal?

Birds!

Birds!

The last day of the camp, we set out on a nice walk by the river, but ended up making it all the way through the park to the ocean, which ended up being a three-and-a-half hour hike. Unprepared as we were (no one thought to grab money for our “quick” walk), Eva talked a taxi driver at one of the coastal towns to drive us back to her site with the promises of payment upon our safe arrival.

After recuperating slightly, we all piled into a taxi and headed to Agadir for the night to celebrate a fellow volunteer’s birthday.

Which language would you like to karaoke in?'

Which language would you like to karaoke in?’

Then Liz, Kirsten, and I went to Leah’s for a night of homemade Pad Thai, shooting star sightings, and grad school application discussions before I caught a taxi on the side of the road the next morning to take me back to Agadir where I caught a bus/train up to Rabat for the Project Design and Management training.

My counterpart, Karim (second from left) with our awesome Peace Corps training staff. Love the staff. Love them a lot.

My counterpart, Karim (second from left) with our awesome Peace Corps training staff. Love the staff. Love them a lot.

Counterparts being awesome.

Counterparts being awesome.

Our project planning timeline.

Our project planning timeline.

PDM is three full days of awesome training, and if you’re a PCV who has the chance to do this training, I would highly recommend it. You bring a counterpart (a Moroccan volunteer who is interested in working with you) and a project idea. The training has you take that idea through the entire project design process, like a recipe for organizing yourself. Basically I just want to spend my life talking about visions, goals, objectives, and indicators for success. Lots of ideas, lots to do, lots of lists to make.

 

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Categories: Camp, Morocco, Training | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Sept. 1, 2013

  1. Lisa

    Thanks for being so diligent about writing a blog – your excitement reminds me of my daughter’s excitement when she was in Kenya during college and the Gambia for PC. And the colors the people (esp women) wear in your photos are beautiful. What a great adventure and experience!

  2. So glad to have found your blog! I’m loving reading about your incredible experience..almost sounds like something I might enjoy doing if I ever got brave enough 😉 Love it! Hope you’re doing well!

  3. Sue Payant

    Hey, I can teach you how to keep bees. I am in my second year. We have 5 hives now. It’s so much fun, educational and makes ecological sense. Get ahold of my when you come back. I am in the church directory.

    • Too cool!!!! I so want to learn! There’s a couple volunteers here who do bee keeping and I want to just absorb all of their knowledge! I’ll definitely be taking you up on that lesson!

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