A little of everything

So now I´m sitting at my coffee shop La Place watching all of the people go by in the square again and having some awesome coffee. Today we went to the police station to inquire about extending my visa. Since I´m married it will be no problem but they needed the marriage decree so they can justify me staying in Morocco, otherwise I´d have to border hop for a day. Now there are a few more things I need to do. I must get my passport changed to reflect my married name and I must petition the court to return my birth certificate. I don´t know how much more I want to deal with the court lol. Everything is a process here going to a government building is crazy here. In light of the Brussels attacks everyone has battened down the hatches here even in this small town. The police station now takes your phones when you go in and they search your bags. It´s nothing really because that is the way it is everywhere but you know it was nice to actually go into a government building and it be like it was before 9-11. It was nice to feel that everyone could live in peace and there was no intention to harm anyone. However even in this small town they are erring on the side of caution. I still feel very safe in Morocco just as safe as I felt in the US. Waking up yesterday and seeing the live coverage of the attacks just an hour after it happened was crazy. I mean I´ve heard of the attacks in Turkey and then now this one closer to home. I remember being in the Paris airport one month after the attack there and it was the first time I´ve seen a military presence really. There were soldiers walking with machine guns and their fingers were very near almost on the triggers. It was a real enlightenment that the world we live in now is all because of the 9-11 attacks. I know that as an American I must admit to feeling safe when I was in the US but as the days passed and the world changed we all changed. I remember I only lived a few miles from my parents then and we had 3 plans to meet in case something happened. Now after all these years of living so far away from my parents I really don´t have a plan. I will say that I wouldn´t trade this experience for anything in the world. There is something to be said about seeing the world. I see things very differently than I did when I left the US. I remember being so excited to leave New Mexico and to leave the US that I couldn´t wait. I wanted to be next to my love and it didn´t matter where I had to go to do that. Honestly I would be content with him on an iceberg.
You know I do feel really safe here in Morocco. The people are very peaceful and the more I can speak to them the happier I become. I´ve been pulling sentences out of my ass and just speaking them in Arabic. The other night Mbarek and I just took a walk to another of my favorite coffee shops, Najat Palace and on our way home I just pulled out a sentence. ¨Ana awad do sheree tlata deak hindy¨. He looked at me and he was so proud. I told him I wanted to buy 3 turkeys. He looks at me and responds… Schno tna ha mook­­.. He asked me if I was crazy. Of course he knows the answer to that. I am crazy or I wouldn´t be here.
Now the funniest thing is happening. I have this man standing in front of me and I have no idea what in the hell he wants. He´s just standing here watching me type. LOl I´d like to think he´s admiring my natural beauty and is very interested in watching me type. However I know that´s not the case. Lucky for me the waiter who knows me ran him off but then he came back and when he came back Mbarek was behind him. Come to find out this man is not poor but he begs for money on the street. He carries his little coffee cup around and begs for money, coffee and cigarettes. His family owns a big farm but he doesn´t like to work so he comes to the city to beg for money. See it´s the same everywhere really.
So this is a small town and to tell you how small it is you can walk the whole town and only walk about 5 miles total across town and back. I prefer to walk or ride my bike but like this morning it´s only 1 mile from our house to the police station so we take a taxi. I asked why can´t we just walk. Well here going to a government building can take you all day so it´s best to go on and get there then be prepared to wait. No one makes appointments here you just show up and wait, it reminds me of the county clerks offices in the US but here you don´t take a number. What´s funny is when we were going around getting all of our papers to get married we went to so many governemnt buildings it would make your head spin and in all of them it was the very same. If you were doing business at the counter you had someone standing right next to you and they would just plop their paperwork down with yours and wait for you to be done with your business all while listening to your business too. Here there is a dimented view of personal space geeez. I like to maintain a handshake distance between those I meet and for those who I´m not meeting I don´t want them rubbing shoulders with me.. well just because. So literally this morning we waited and waited. Everything is still logged in ledgers so they log you in a handwritten book when you enter the police station then they just kinda turn you loose in there to find who you need. You find the door of the office you have business in and knock on the door. Very few people have secretaries which is kinda cool because you kinda force the person you have business with to deal with you. I like that actually. But the crazy part is it´s always see the person then come back tomorrow. I´ll be happy when we just don´t have to do all that anymore. So to give you all an idea of how much we´ve had to go through I´m gonna outline it for you.
1. I had to bring with me a FBI background check which didn´t come in time so I had to petition the state of New Mexico for a background check. My last paycheck stubs to prove I can and did hold a job in the US. A statement from my doctor in the US that I didn´t have STD´s, AIDS or any other contageous diseases. I had to have a physical and a statement detailing all of my RX´s. Birth Certificate and my passport.
Once I got here….
2. Mbarek had to go to his home town to get copies of his birth certificate 8 of them.
3. Mbarek had to go to Meknes, the county seat, of where he was born to get his certificates stamped.
4. We went to Casablanca to the US Consulate where I payed $100 USD to get two pieces of paper. A certified copy of my passport and a statement from the Consulate giving me permission to marry Mbarek.
5. Then to Rabat to another government building to get those two papers from the Consulate stamped and pay $4.00 USD for 8 stamps a total of $32.00 USD.
6. Then to another building in Rabat to get those papers stamped yet again. This was my request to the Moroccan Government for permission to marry Mbarek. Another $10.00 USD.
Oh and a visit to the doctor here to obtain a health certificate stating that we were in good health. I forgot that but I didn´t want to go back and re number everything. That cost us $40.00 USD.
7. Take all of the papers to the certified translator. Everything had to be translated into Arabic eventhough some of the papers we had obtained in Rabat were in French. $250.00 USD.
8. All of the translated papers had to be taken to who I call The Man. A person you go to when you want to get married even if it´s Moroccans marrying each other everyone goes to this man. He then makes copies of everything.
9. Take all of the translated documents with the copies to another building to get those stamped to certify that those are the in fact copies of the original documents.
10. Take those stamped papers back to The Man. He then submits those to the court.
11. Go to the courthouse to pick up the papers and take them to the police station. This took hours because the woman wasn´t in her office then once she returned people bulled in front of us eventhough we were the first ones there.
12. Wait for the police to call you for your interview. This took a couple of days.
13. Interview with the police. They ask you all kinds of questions about your education and jobs. They want to know how much money you made and they investigate both of you. They run background checks on you and even call your neighbors. They asked me where I was sleeping and I told them with his mother and sister. Because here Mbarek can get arrested for sleeping in the same room with an unmarried woman who is not his relative. They ask you about sexual relations because it´s illegal to have sex before marriage.
14. They call Mbarek back to ask him more questions about his income.
15. The papers were sent to the courthouse, the judge signs them and then returns them back to The Man.
16. Go to The Man for a review of the paperwork making sure everything is correct all the information is right. Submit that to the judge.
17. Judge signs the paperwork returns it to The Man. We go to sign those papers and we have to decide on a dowry amount. Here in Morocco, under Islamic law, Mbarek has to give me a dowry. So we settled on an amount and that was submitted to the court.
18. Back to The Man…this time we sign our paperwork and the book. The book is the offical book so when we signed that I became Ms. Mbarek Harcharas….. finally. But that´s not it. We had to pay the man more. More you ask. Yes everytime we went to the man we had to pay. He wrote the marriage decree and submitted it to the court.
19. Back to The Man to pick up our marriage decree and take that to the court yet again. Finally with one last stamp and a lick n stick stamp we were finally married.
After tallying it all up we spent about $1000 USD here in Morocco to get married. I bet none of you ever thought it was such a process. According to what I´ve read it´s one of the most difficult places in the world to get married. If the US made it that difficult alot of people would give up. Keep in mind we started this process one month after I arrived. The police even asked us why we waited so long. What a month is long well I suppose. Most people who get married here to foreigners manage to do this in about 3 weeks and most live in a larger town so everything is close by. Also most who marry from here are looking for a visa to somewhere so they want to do it quick. Mbarek and I waited because we just wanted to make sure that we were a really good fit for each other. We are both in our 40´s and just were making sure. He really didn´t want to rush into it because he wanted to be sure that I was happy here and that I really wanted to stay here. See many people, and yes this happened to a friend of mine here in Casablanca, rush into getting married, then the woman goes back home to get ready to move here and in the mean time she changes her mind and never returns thus leaving the man in limbo. In order to get divorced here both parties have to be here to sign the paperwork but if the woman or man never returns here to Morocco then the person here is stuck. They can´t get married again. And let me tell you it happens more often than not. In fact Mbarek was warned, even after I arrived, to not marry me. They told him that I wouldn´t ever live here and I´d leave him then he´d be up shit creek to ever get married again. Well that is certainly not the case but I can understand why he´d be so cautious. It has really caused major problems in my friend´s case and this was many years ago. I don´t know if he´s divorced yet even after all this time.
……………………………………………………… You know Mbarek told me that people here will pay me money to sit with them and have conversations with US people over the internet. Interesting way of making money I think. Maybe that would be a change in pace from everyone who I meet here that speaks English wanting to talk to me about the politics of my country. And to tell you all the truth these people here don´t like Obama. That´s usually the first thing out of their mouth… they ask, ¨how about your Obama¨. Ha ha ha I tell them I didn´t vote for him. LOL. Then they immediately ask who I´m voting for in this election. I can´t escape it even if I wanted to. Ok so I think I´ve talked enough today.
Ciao and may God heal Belgium.

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Animals and People

After I wrote the long post which most of you will read today I found myself in bed all day yesterday sleeping.  I slept and slept and slept.  I think I needed it.  I’ve been in a rather foul mood here recently but I think that’s because of a few things.  I will say that one of them is not my husband.  My animals have been testing my patience recently and they’ve been very demanding.  They’ve also gone into retrograde with their potty training, well Butch has.  He’s a little cutie but can also be a little monster.  I have to remind myself that as with children and animals teaching them is a life long job.  In fact some people require life long teaching.  I feel I may be one of them.  As an only child I am very selfish and am prone to temper tantrums like a spoiled little girl.  I don’t know that at 42 I will ever out grow them, I think it’s too late.  One of the greatest struggles I have is cohabiting with others.  I love family and the concept of family but it’s been so long since I’ve really had any that I live with.  This is one struggle that I just try to assimilate into my life and make the best of it until I can get use to it.  What I try to think about when I’m out and see all of the animals on the streets is that they would love to have what I have.  They would love to have a home.  I think I take for granted everything I’ve been given here.  I use the word given because I should be more appreciative of what my husband has literally GIVEN me.  I want you all to know that writing and putting my life out here for everyone is great therapy for me.  It helps me with my depression and my embedded selfish ways.  I think to expose ones weaknesses not only helps the person but it can help others too.  And let’s face it I don’t have anything else much to do.  I suppose I could crochet or needle point, both of which I do, but this helps like that doesn’t.

So the animals on the streets here are everywhere.  When I first got here I had to sit and have a talk with myself about how I am going to live here and be able to see homeless animals on the streets here.  There are so so so many.  I’m very lucky that my husband has a love for animals like I do.  See he even took me in along with my two animals and gave us a home.  Every time I walk Butch outside I see homeless animals.  I see them laying in nooks and crannies, walking the streets going some where, see them looking for food, just see them doing their thing.  Some people are very nice to them and some aren’t.  When you go to the market here you see them around all of the food and the shop owners will scat them away.  Most of them have learned to keep a distance hoping to catch a bit of food.  In the cover photo of this entry I was buying some makeup and there happened to be a cat there so I picked it up and gave it a small dose of loving.  I think the baby was very happy to be in my arms for it felt very safe for a few minutes.  I really didn’t want to put it down.  Even when I’m in the market I will give them some food.  I think about what my husband tells me that most people here cannot afford to have meat on their tables so our animals are very lucky that they get their own hamburger or turkey stew.  I started thinking about how lucky we are when we love something.  How lucky each party is when love is involved.  We all get something out of giving love and being loved.  In a movie I was watching the other night astronauts where travelling to a different galaxy to save the earth and all of the humans on it.  The one thing they devised that transcended anything was love.

I know I have unconditional love for God’s little creatures but I think what I need to work on is having love for all people and things in this world.  Is is possible for us as humans to put our own thoughts aside to really love everyone?  I don’t know that it’s possible to really do that for our instinct is to take care of ourselves.  This is one thing that I personally need to work on.

I suppose this topic has come up because of what I’m seeing in my new place.  I see much love in people and kindness.  I see people scraping up pennies just to have vegetables to feed their families and I feel guilty eating my hamburger all while thinking that there is a family that doesn’t have electricity.  The other day Mbarek brought a TV home and was working on it.  I asked him how much he was going to make on this job and he said nothing.  He went on to tell me that this TV belonged to a man who has 3 children and they don’t have electricity because they can’t afford it.  The TV runs off of a car battery and that’s the reason that it blew the motherboard.  Unfortunately Mbarek couldn’t fix the TV without a new board, which he didn’t have in all of the scrap he’s accumulated.  Then the next morning I find myself saying to him, we really need a new coffee maker because this one has died.  After giving this little exchange some thought I realized that we have a boil coffee maker in the other room.  It only makes a small cup but it works.  Why not use that. 1916932_10206938535555560_7290937253371397419_n12821490_10206938535275553_4901429680364642152_n10524335_10206938535595561_7010104485220093052_n

The biggest change for me living here is that this place doesn’t just run out and get what they need.  They make do with what they have, people and animals.  I was out the other night and we were getting a chicken from the chicken store.  You know pick the chicken and they weigh it then kill it right there.  Anyway, I saw a few stray dogs, all of which were not starving let me say that.  One dog was eating an onion or some kind of vegetable that was given to him by the cart owner who was selling produce.  The animals here know their place and they don’t just steal food.  It’s amazing people who have nothing still give to the meek.  I appreciate that about life here.  It’s like my new cat Mish Mish.  She is just a stray cat and really only came in to see Mbarek while she ate and slept.  Now since I’ve been here Mish Mish actually enjoys being home with me.  She finds that roaming the streets is not what it use to be.  She sleeps with me at night and she really is a sweet little girl.  She can be a royal bitch at times hissing at everyone and yesterday she got in trouble for stealing my food but all in all she’s a sweet baby.  I noticed that she had an uneven lip in the front and she drools.  I asked Mbarek what happened to her and he said someone burned her mouth.  When she came to him through the window she had a burned mouth and it’s gonna be like that forever.  How sad!  How SAD!  It just goes to show there are mean people everywhere.  Since Mish Mish has been around me and I give her love she stays around all the time.  8804_10206938534195526_7324443375002064785_n

I do feel bad that I can’t bring them all into my home but I will when I have my house on the farm.  Until then I have to endure seeing them all on the streets.  When I look at all the fighting I see going on in the US and all of the hatred there I just find some solace in seeing it here where everyone lives among each other in peace.  Morocco is one of the most peaceful places.  Now I’ve been down the street and people are fighting but they have their fist fights and get on with life.  I’ve seen many little spats here in fact I was in the market taking these photos of the cats and there were some little boys following me.  I was walking my bicycle through and one of them ran in front of me trying to trip me.  Mbarek smacked him lightly in face, on the cheek.  Some other men turned around when it happened and Mbarek told them what was going on.  The man that I didn’t know grabbed the little boy by his ear and ordered him to go on somewhere.  My face was in awe.  I couldn’t imagine someone smacking my child.  However I will say that if my child was acting up and doing something like that when I wasn’t around I would want the adults to make him mind.  Evidently from what I learned is that these little boys are always terrorizing people in the market and they get more spankings and correction there than they do from their parents.  FYI the little boys were in the market selling plastic grocery bags to make money when they should have been in school.  Here it’s not illegal to not send your children to school.  Parents don’t get in trouble for not sending them to school.  Interesting huh?

Well I think it’s time to get in the shower and go to work with Mbarek when he comes home for lunch.  Maybe he’ll bring something good home for lunch since I’ve been in a non cooking mode.  I try to explain to the animals that fresh food is a luxury… actually the bags of food they have here is a luxury and well they won’t eat them because they don’t like the dog and cat food I give them.  I know they appreciate me and love me though and that literally fills my heart with joy.  I hope you all find your heart full of joy with the loved ones around you.  Be thankful for every day and appreciate life, love, food, all of the gifts that God has GIVEN you because it’s too easy to be selfish and throw tantrums.  Medication won’t help any of that only a change within yourself will remedy those things.  Make sure you smile much and love much I believe that is the key to life.

Ciao.

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Out and about…

So as I sit here at one of my favorite coffee shops, La Place, I´m enjoying watching everyone walking by.  La Place sits nestled on the corner of the large square here in Khemisset and it´s a great place to sit and watch the city walk, bike,ride by.  Oh I forgot they could be toted in a horse drawn carriage too.  I think if you sit here long enough you will see the entire city walk by.  This has become one of my favorite places exactly for this reason.  People as they walk by tend to stare because my blonde hair stands out like a sore thumb.  Those who know me here like our waiter and Hassan, the owner of the small store next to here are use to seeing me.  I come out in my black and white chevron print Barbie dress.  Yes it´s an actual Barbie brand dress.  A swing dress with a halter strap to hold it up and my bright pink lipstick just makes me happy inside and out.  I´m trying to be a bit modest and wear a v cut sweater but as many of you know I´m just not into covering much up.  What a change it is to even wear a sweater on a gorgeous 60 degree day.  So the customary thing for the women to wear is a house coat, so I call it, and it´s known as a jilaba.  What it reminds me of is my mothers old house coat from the 80´s.  Actually if I had that I would be really kickin it here.  I´d be the stylish one in town.  This housecoat that my mother had was a bright purple and it was fury.  They don´t make them anymore but I bet she might still have hers.  I need to get a jilaba for many reasons like when I take the dog out for a walk and I don´t want to get dressed.  I can throw the jilaba on over my night clothes or if I sleep naked no one will know that I don´t have on anything underneath.  The jilaba is here like what the kilt is for Ireland, lol. 1916889_10206924811132458_1446573290938490745_n (1)

 

So there is alot going on in front of this coffee shop all the time.  It´s the main drag for the horse drawn carriages and of course it´s the center of town.  Palm trees are abound and there´s no shortage of pedestrian traffic.  Some with scowling looks and then there´s the group of little boys that just got out of school and they walk by and are smiling at me looking back constantly so I wave and they smile then take off running.  One of the things here is that people don´t smile much.  I´ve said it before that my grand dad use to say that people back in his day didn’t smile much because they didn´t have much to smile about.  I think that it´s true here.  This country is poor compared to the US.  INTERRUPTION…  as I´m typing I´m looking around and this lady just walked out of the coffee shop in a bright PURPLE jilaba.  Hot damn!  Well I was smiling at her and she looked at me like I was a freak.  I bet she didn´t realize I was just thinking of her.

 

I wonder if the people here actually know that I´m writing about them.  I never actually look at my keyboard or my screen so I am just typing and watching everyone.  It´s winter here so everyone is covered up I wonder if this will change as the weather gets warmer.  So there are always policemen walking the streets and well two military men in uniform just went by.  I have my earphones in so I won´t be approached by people begging for money.  At least the people here who are begging actually have a real reason to ask for money.  Mostly it´s older women or men who are too old to work.  Usually Mbarek gives them a dihram which is $0.10 usd.  I spear if I were rich I´d really make my money go far here to help the poor.  There isn´t social security so the poor are actually poor.  I´ve been told that it´s the childrens´ responsibility to take care of their seniors here.  I hear Mbarek tell his older brother  Hamid that he could be locked up, arrested, if he doesn´t start helping out my mother in law.  Can they do that actually put you in jail, I suppose they can.  Oh another thing I learned about being here is that they don´t arrest prostitutes.  I suppose that´s a good thing but I tell you what you don´t see is real drug addicts on the streets.  Now I haven´t been roaming the streets at night but I have been out late and you don´t see what you see in the US.  People here don´t have a disposable income like we do there.  I think part of the problem in the US is that people have too much to get into.  Granted people will always find something to get into but the major thing here that people do is smoke hash.  You can actually buy morphine over the counter here.  I have not needed it yet but when I had a flare up of the diverticulitis I had the option.  I figured if it got that bad that I needed morphine then I needed to go to the hospital.

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There is also not a shortage of Mercedes here.  Actually in Meknes all of the taxis are old Mercedes which is kinda cool.  I´ve never seen so many in one place as I did in the taxi yard there next to the fort.  Sometimes I think the only thing missing in this square center of town is a fire breather and some people juggling.  Oh my question mark key is not programmed on this keyboard so when I ask a question I can´t use the punctuation, keep that in mind, I´ll just use the _ for the question mark.  So why a fire breather or a juggler_ I don´t know for some reason I feel that it would fit right in.  Also here there are no food inspectors to inspect the street food that is sold.  Literally Mbarek jokes with me that the first time I roasted my own peanuts they were so good that I could have a cart and set up here to sell peanuts.  I told him he´s full of shit and he just did a sing song…  Pretty woman selling peanuts.   LOL it makes me smile thinking about that.  Today I´m lucky I have two small water bottles that I have from coffee that I can take home.  See spices here are sold by the kilo or the 1-2 kilo or some in smaller amounts but non the less they do not come like they do in the US in the bottle or tin from the grocery store.  You go to the market and they dip some out for you.  Buying a spice rack here is at cheapest $15, which I refuse to buy.  So I have made my spice containers out of water bottles that we get each time with coffee.  I think I only need like 5 more to have all of my spices out of the plastic bags and into bottles.  I love to recycle.

 

I wonder where everyone is going here, there are many people here and they are all going here and there.  For a small town this is really a busy place.  Today Mbarek is working down at Hassan´s store.  Hassan has a very nice store and in fact Mbarek likes to keep me out of there because I always find something that I love in there.  What he makes fixing the electronics there I normally spend.  Furniture, rugs, kitchen supplies, pots and pans you name it I love it all.  It behoves him to keep me away from there.  Now Madonna is on my iphone playing and oh how I love her music.  Hell I like all music.  Now since sitting here I have seen some absolutely beautiful ladies walking.  I am trying to decide on a color for my jilaba.  I´m what 250 lbs and covering this much beautiful woman in one color is intimidating.  If you pick the wrong color you will look like a piece of fruit and that is the last thing I need is to look like an apple in a red jilaba.  I normally love pink but I don´t think my color is going to be pink.  Although it wouldn´t beyond me to wear a little stem on my head and be an apple lol.   There is no shortage of little ones here.  All of the children are so cute and they keep up with their partents as they are walking.  Another thing that there is no shortage of are NY Yankees hats.  Even the little boys love the NY hats, which I can´t complain I love the Yankees.  So most people here wear slip on shoes.  All of the slip on shoes seem to be way to small for them too.  I am thinking to get a pair of the pointy toed shoes that are native to Morocco.  They actually have shops that make these shoes and I want a pair in every color.  They are made of leather and are flat slip on´s.  I think they only cost like $20 so for a hand made pair of shoes that´s not bad at all.

 

My coffee is long gone and the waiter just brought me some Lemon juice which here Lemon means orange.  This country has the best hamburger meat and orange juice of anywhere.  Now it´s time for some Roger and Zapp.  My mind rolls back to the old skating rink and having so much fun on wheels.  I only wish that was something I could have still done through out my adult life.  I felt so at home on wheels.  Yesterday I saw two boys hanging onto a truck going down the main street of town just flying along on their skates.  I have to say it looked like damn good fun!  Dangerous but fun!  I so would have done that when I was younger given the chance.  Some of the things I see kids do here looks like alot of fun.  Do you know they sell wooden tops at the markets.  Tops like the kind you wrap a string around and throw.  Mbarek said he use to gamble using tops and took all of the money of his friends.  He and I were out talking to the little boy upstairs and he was playing with his top.  Mbarek picked up the top and did a trick where he flipped it in the air then it landed spinning in the palm of his hand.  I was like HA! my husband is freakin awesome.

 

Ok so the boys just came down the street and one of them walked right up to me to introduce himself.  I shook their hands and then they came back to me.  Asked me for my facebook and well I couldn´t help myself I let them have my name.  What the hell they are cute.  I doubt they will be able to find me anyway because I have it locked down.  LOL it was cute.  One of them asked me for my phone number.  I had to break the news to them that I was married then they proceeded to tell me that they would be my sons.  LOL it´s cute.  And hell the flattery makes me feel good because it´s innocent fun.  The waiter told them to leave me alone it was funny.  Here it seems that the village helps raise children.  Even when on the street you will see another parent actually correct and be the adult to children on the street when they get out of hand.  I think that is another thing that the US could use more of is people taking responsibility for their children and that when another child is out of hand the ability to be able to correct them.  If this happened more you wouldn´t see as many misbehaved, thug, children.  So that was fun.

 

Anyway I still have not settled on a particular color of jilaba and I´ve been giving this some though for many days.  I think I´m just gonna need one of every damn color in the rainbow that way I will have one to match every dress or mood I´m in.  Now there are men selling toys and balloons in the square while children rid the little cars around.  Oh I see what´s going on there is a huge bugs bunny inflatable down at the other end.  I suppose it´s a bouncy house.  My view will be better once this guy moves his car.  Thank God I love to see and this car was becoming an eyesore.  They have like a little carnival set up down at the other end of the square for the children.  So the weather has turned off cool and I´m glad I have on my sweater now.  I tell you I´ve seen 100´s of people walking with shoes too small, what is up with that_   Pretty soon the air will be filled with the smell of cooking meat.  Being a vegetarian here is fairly easy however the meat just smells so good and it´s hard to pass up.  Mbarek won´t let me get any street food because he swears it will send us to the hospital.

 

So since I´ve been here most people who speak English want to talk to me about politics.  Actually politics is the last thing that I want to discuss but I oblige them because they want to know a true American´s view.  I suppose the ¨I´m ready for Hillary¨ sticker on my computer is a dead give away that I´m American.  I have had this sticker for years when she first thought about running for office.  I´m not sure if my views have changed toward her after the Libya thing but I will keep it on my computer cause I like it.  Oh wait I just remembered I have Mbareks computer well hell all of that is kinda irrelevant then lol.  I love these little french cars I see going around.  They are Renaults and they look like the old German rent a wrecks you use to see in movies.  I told Mbarek I want one of those then he reminded me they don´t have air conditioner so I changed my mind.  I think they would be great to run around in and they are small.  It´s now 530 here and the square is totally bustling with people being off work.  Everyone comes to the square to visit and let the children play after work.  Some of us though are still having our caffeine, juice, and cigarettes.  I could so sit here everyday and just watch people.  I´m a huge people watcher so this is a good spot for me.  I love this waiter here he´s a cutie.  I don´t know if he´s married but I´d set him up with a single friend of mine and he speaks English.  He just came up to me and I paid him, I owe him another dollar but he´s funny he said you´re fine here Mbarek asked me to make sure no body hassles you while he´s working.  LOL  my husband really watches over me and I love him for that.  I spent so much time alone and I was the only one watchin my back.  It´s nice to have someone watching my back.  I know when I say things like Mbarek doesn´t want me to do this or that by myself it sounds like he may be controlling to some.  I know this was a worry for alot of you.  He said to me one day that I was his whole world  and that if something ever happened to me because he wasn´t cautious then he would never forgive himself.  Ha I think it´s because he´d hate to have to call momma and tell her something happened to me.  He´s always watching out for me like making sure my purse is secure and that I have my phone tucked away because people here are known for phone snatching.  I think it happens here more than it does in the US.

 

There is this cute old couple sitting on the bench across the street.  He´s wearing his jilaba and she´s got on a purple one.  Today must be the day for purple.  Nothiing she has on matches, the sun is going down and where I am it´s dark so the photo won´t take well.  I wanted to show you all how cute they are.  I joke Mbarek that we will be like that when we are old and that we will be coming into town to watch all the people.  I will see him in his jilaba robe and a pointy hat with the pointed shoes.  I love it.   I´m still trying to get use to my new wedding ring it´s a tad bit different than my engagement ring.  I keep telling Hassan that he needs me to price things in his store.  He laughs at me because the other day I was in there and he had a nice Belinciaga bag for sale and it was only $5.00.  WTF for a Belinciaga bag.  Well they just clicked the internet off and that´s ok because I always do my blogs separate because I´ve lost a few of them and then lost my thoughts.  YAY!  Well there was a lul in the hustle and bustle of down town Khemisset but now it´s boomin again.  I get all kinds of looks sitting at this coffee shop I wonder what people are thinking.  There are very few women who smoke here so they could be staring at me for that reason because I have my computer and cigarettes here.  OMG I just saw the coolest thing..  well being a redneck at heart it was cool.  A man on a bicycle with a childs lawn chair strapped to the back of his bike with a child in it.  I guess if it works and it did they looked good to go.   Funny the shit I see.  I know many of you want to see all of this but there is just no way to show you everything so for those of you who have stuck around reading for this long I´m doing my best to describe everything.  I remember when I first moved to Albuquerque I would go to old town and sit just like this…taking it all in.  I can´t imagine I can ever take all this in because it´s so different.  Some of these women are absolutely beautiful in their hijabs.  There was this woman who just walked by and she had on a long black flowing skirt with a light blue fitted shirt, heels, and black hijab.  She was absolutely beautiful.  I think that the hijab intimidates people in the US because it´s not something that is fashionable.  Here it´s fashionable.  I like the idea of wearing one, like yesterday.  Yesterday I felt like shit and had a really bad day.  My hair was a damn mess because I tried to curl my hair with the flat iron and that was a disaster.  Anyway I just wouldn´t have gone to Walmart looking that bad so I put on my skull cap and a scarf and I looked great with a pretty dress.  No one knew I felt like shit because I looked great.  You don´t have to fix your hair and that´s great.  I will say some people in the US would benefit from wearing a hijab just to cover that shit hair up but NOOOOO they´d rather go to Walmart in their pajamas and hair a damn mess.  See if you lived here you wouldn´t have Walmart but you could wear your scarf and your housecoat out and look just like everyone else.  Ha ha ha ha ha.  If this is winter here I´m gonna really hate to see summer.  I´m fine in a dress with a little sweater but most everyone is bundled up to the gills with winter coats.  One of the reasons that you always see Mbarek wearing his black jacket is because it´s winter.  He lives in that damn coat but he´s tall and very thin.  I think if we ever had children especially a girl she would be a model with his height and weight then there´s my big boobs so…  I´m thinking of what I want to do for dinner.  Actually I´m thinking of sweet stuff.  When we get silly we talk about kidnapping the man who makes sweet stuff and chaining him in the corner of our room to do nothing but make sweet stuff for us.  I´m telling you the sweets here are to die for.  The bakeries make everything from the fresh fruit and well chocolate.  The strawberry shit is the bomb I could literally just take a bath in it ..  yes it´s that good.  I´ll take a photo of what we get and post it.  I´m sure on our way home tonight we will stop and get sweet stuff.  Well I think it´s about time to get going because it´s getting cold and I owe the waiter another dollar.  I will say another thing that has changed about me is my body temperature.  I´ve been drinking hot tea and I no longer have cold water on tap.  Ever since I was a kid we kept a cold jug of water in the fridge but here they say that it´s important to drink warm things and keep your body warm so I am.  Another thing they say, that I´ve read is that if you are trying to get pregnant that you need to eat warm things and drink warm things to keep yourself warm.  Maybe it will work.  For me now cold water out of the tap is very cold and room temperature water is cold.  For those of you who know me I´m known for being so HOT all the time… well not anymore.  I get cold when it´s 60 degrees outside.  Maybe this is the trick to tolerating the hot sultry weather in the summer.  At least the water at room temperature should be colder than me.

Now the street vendors have come out.  There is a man walking selling pictures.  He has his hands full I tell you.  I´m not sure what they were photos of but it appeared to be of the King.  Everywhere you go here there is a photo of the King.   The man with the large cart was just pushing yellow apples through the street.  Those guys really have a hard job.  Can you imagine pushing a heavy wooden cart through the street loaded with apples.  We all know how heavy 10 lbs is I can´t even begin to say how many kilos of apples there are on that cart.  What I do know is that it´s heavy because sometimes you see them really struggling.  The man is popping pop corn over there.  I mean most of you would look at these little food stands and cringe but actually the popcorn man has awesome popcorn.  Here come the military men through the streets again I like seeing them as it makes you feel very safe.

There are a few things that I have to say I have not done since I´ve been here.  I don´t know what a gallon of gas costs now and I never even look anymore.  I haven´t driven a car in almost 3 months.  I have to say i don´t miss it.  What I do miss is work sometimes.  I find myself feeling like there is some place I need to be at times.  I have a sense of urgency that I need to be somewhere but in reality there is no where I need to be.  I wanted to slow my life down and I have.  Now it´s important to not let the depression get me and to seek beauty in the small things like sitting here at this coffee house and writing to you while watching all of the people.  It´s nice to have time to sit and see the world just happen around you knowing that you have no where you need to be.  I don´t get in a hurry much anymore to do anything to go anywhere.  I was watching tv the other day and there is a line from a movie that really stuck with me.  It was from Eat Love Pray when she´s sitting in the barber shop in Italy.  The man says to her the problem with you Americans is that you just don´t know the simpleness of doing nothing.  He´s right we don´t.  There is a great simplicity to just doing nothing.  I mean I have all of the knowledge of the western world and a first rate education with two degrees but none of that matters here right now.  I just love where I am with my husband by my side and enjoying my new city.    Today has really been a great day of simplicity and enjoying life.  I wish that every one of you could come sit with me and enjoy everything I see from this coffee shop.

Ciao till next time.

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Today is a great day

Good morning world.  I realize it’s been a while since I last wrote and I’m going to have to change that as of now.   So finally we are married and I’m still adjusting to my living situation.  Yesterday I have to say was a really bad day.  Why?  I just felt suffocated for some reason, not by my husband or anyone really but by me.  See the thing about depression and being bi polar is that these things never go away they just get better.  I have to say though for the past couple of months I’ve been doing very well mentally.  So I finally decided that it’s time I get out and explore my new home all on my own.  Mbarek would rather keep me home and safe but I am getting restless.  I’ve worked it all up in my mind that because I can’t talk to people that I need to stay home until I can communicate.  Well BULLSHIT!  I’m getting out.  Mbarek is actually very happy about that but he is concerned that the way people drive here that I will get hit on my bike, lol.  It’s totally a possibility but I’ll be fine.  I think my own mind has gotten me to where I feel like I’m a little trapped.  By no means am I though except in my head.  Things are back to normal and he’s working at the store alot so I must do it on my own.  Actually I’ve never known myself to not want to get out and go shopping.  So I ask myself why scared?  Actually I’m not so I will be out and about by myself today.  I just have to watch the taxi’s because they are wild.  Today it’s 60 something degrees so I’m gonna stick Butch in the basket and off we go with a little DJ Quik, Summer Breeze.

So we were out the other day and I found a little shop a “Girl Shop” where they sell makeup and things.  There’s not a Walgreens or a CVS to stop in to shop for makeup.  Oh by the way I saw mascara the other day just Maybelline mascara and it was $10.  What a rip off.  Things like makeup here are very expensive but that’s not gonna stop me.  I found some really cheap eyeliner that is awesome and it’s waterproof for $1.  You can’t beat that.

I’ve made some friends here like a pharmacist that is a US Citizen, he’s very cool.  He lived in Virginia and now owns a Pharmacy here.  It seems that most of the people I meet here who speak English are prominent members of society.  I told him that it wouldn’t surprise me if we started to get invites to gatherings and dinners once people know that we are married.  I’d really like that.  Of course that is what I’m trying to explain to him about my mental issues is that I’m ok with many people, I leave somewhere and know everyone in the room.  I’m not shy that’s for sure.

Last night I went outside and sat against our house listening to music and enjoying time.  The next thing I knew the little boys in houses next to us were sneaking up on me to see what I was doing on my ipad.  It wasn’t long they were sitting on each side of me and we were listening to music with my earphones and playing games.  They were having fun and I loved it.  I will have a soccer ball very soon and then play with them.  The tomboy in me will eventually surface and it won’t be long.  Give me a ball and we are on.  These little guys are like 6-12 years old and they are so cute.  I think they love my blonde hair.  Maybe the like the fact that I smile at them all the time.  Whatever it is I love the little ones.  I had a little girl the other day run up to me put her arms around Butch and kiss him then the other little girl did the same.  It was so cute.  At first I think the people were wondering about me now they are learning that I’m very friendly and I like everyone.  Afterall I’m just like them just a little more sparkly and colorful.  It won’t hurt some around here to loosen up and smile a little bit.  So after yesterday about freaking out from cabin fever I fixed it and today is just beautiful.  I’ve been singing with my iphone this morning and it’s time for a shower then I’m gonna tear up the streets with my smile and get out and about.

yabtasim kathiranaan!    (Smile much!)

Ciao till tomorrow.