100 days

Believe it or not, today, December 10th, 2013, marks the 100th day I've been in Morocco.
So in honor of the 100 days, I'm going to write 100 things. They could be about my experience, Morocco in general, the food, anything, so we'll see how this goes.

1. Peanut Butter- I never thought I could live without peanut butter, but I've gone over two months without it now
2. Am Lou - the amazing honey, argan, and almond/peanut spread that I have on Harsha almost everyday
3. Harsha - a corn bread type round bread made out of semolina. It's amazing with honey or am lou
4. The Green Door - the hanut with green doors that I get am lou and harsha at almost everyday
5. Hanut - a small store selling little things like Momo's or Bola's
6. Momo's - 1 dirham buys a pack of 6 of these little cookies. They're oreo like sandwhich cookies that aren't even that great, but are HIGHLY ADDICTAVE and perfect for eating Perly with when you don't have a spoon
7. Perly - yogurt brand
8. Bolas - Spanish cheese balls for 3 dirhams
9. Dirham - Moroccan currency. 1 dollar is about 8 dirhams
10. Concrete Walls - Without insulation I'm freezing right now.
11. Medina - old part of town surrounded by a wall, shopping area where you can buy anything from a 10 dirham adapter to a djellaba
12. Djellaba - a robe-like dress sort of thing with a hood worn over pajamas or sweats when you go out for a short time and are too lazy to put on real clothes. They make laziness and comfort look classy, so basically the best thing ever. Both men and women wear them.
13. Caftan - while we're on the subject of clothes, a caftan is a GORGEOUS traditional Moroccan dress worn to weddings and formal occasions. A caftan, unlike a djellaba, does not have a hood and has a belt like band around the middle
14. Babusch - Moroccan slipper type sandals. Most are point at the toe, but Fezzian babush are rounded and more comfortable in my opinion.
15. Shoes on carpets are a big NO-NO, but shoes are always worn around the house.
16. Couches - made out of mattresses and pillows and usually surround a table for when company is over
17. Tea - Every meal, every day. Tea is a MUST. Even if you quickly stop by someone's house, you are almost always invited for a cup of tea. I probably have 4 or 5 cups a day
18. Rife - Otherwise known as a "Moroccan Crepe." Really don't know how to explain this. It's kind of a mix between a chapatti and a crepe and is delicious with nutella.
19. Moroccan Cookies - almonds, almonds, almonds. It's a good thing I don't have nut allergies, because almonds are everywhere. When invited somewhere for tea, you'll generally have cookies, and if you don't like almonds, well then you have a problem.
20. Sweet Potato Jam - Sounds bizarre, but it is amazing.
21. Taxi's - Taxi's are a different color in every city. Here in Rabat, they're blue.
22. Tram - the tram runs throughout the city on two different lines. It's cheap, but can take some time and stations are not everywhere, so it's not always the best form of transportation.
23. My feet - Walking is my preferred form of transportation. It's free and sometimes even faster than the tram. Also it gives me time to think and an opportunity to explore new areas of the city.
24. Cafés  - They're on every street corner. They're great for a quick café au lait or pain au chocolate, although they aren't usually frequented by women.
25. Pastries - From a Mille feullie to an éclair, these pastries are quickly fattening me up.
26. Gym - I joined a women's only gym here to try to counteract the pastries, but the balance is far from equal.
27. Belly Dancing - tried a "Dance Oriental, (don't be fooled, it's belly dancing)," class at the gym, and let me just tell you that I cannot belly dance. Not at all.
28. Leather - Fez is known for their leather. I splurged on a super nice leather bag when we visited the tanneries in the Fez Medina.
29. Spices - Moroccan Spices. Cumin, saffron, need I say more?
30. Tagine - a stew-like dish made of steamed vegetables, fish, or chicken. Served in a communal dish and eaten with bread.
31. Forks - at least in my host family, they're rarely used. It's gotten to the point where I'll put down my fork and reach for the bread if it's an option.
32. Bread - bread is an ESSENTIAL part of Moroccan life. It's even holy! Generally if someone sees a piece of bread on the ground, they will pick it up, kiss it, and put where it won't be stepped on.
33. Couscous - Almost every Friday after the afternoon prayer we have couscous. Mind you Moroccan cousous is not the dry grainy dish you find in the states, but rather a steaming hot creamy dish with vegetables and chicken. It is also served in a communal dish and either eaten with a spoon or your hands. My host mom sort of tosses it in her hand until she forms a ball and eats it that way. I've tried, it didn't work.
34. Call to Prayer - Sounds from the mosques 5 times a day. It used to wake me up in the mornings, but now I'm used to it.
35. The Atlantic Ocean - literally live a 5 min walk away and still haven't swam there yet. It's too cold right now anyway.
36. Cold - It is collllddddd right now. Temperature wise my struggles might not seem to significant, but when you add in the concrete walls and lack of heating... it gets pretty cold.
37. Polar Fleece Djellaba's - greatest invention ever. Be lazy AND warm at the same time!
38. Panini's - every restaurant sells the same selection of Panini's
39. Souk - the market. Every kind of food from fresh fish to tomatoes.
40. Fish - since Rabat is on the coast, fish are everywhere. From huge swordfish to little tiny minnows
41. Fruit - eaten as dessert after dinner
42. Mandarins - Tangerines, (or clementines for you East Coasteners)
43. Pomegranates - delicious when in season here! Can be found on street corners for a couple of dirhams each
44. Prickly Pears - Super sweet fruit from a cactus.
45. Hammam - a Public bathing house with 3 different rooms ranging from warm, to hot, to burning
46. Keese - glove-like scrubby that causes your dead skin to roll right off
47. Savon Noir - soap made from olives. A dirhams worth is plenty for a trip to the hammam
48. Rhassoul - Clay that when mixed with water can be used a shampoo or a mask for your skin.
49. Henna - Most of you have probably heard of it used for intricate designs on skin, but henna is also used here as a hair dye as well as a skin cleanser.
50. Argan Oil - liquid gold. Argan oil is an amazing oil for your skin, hair, and even cooking. It is only grown in southern Morocco and requires an extremely large amount of work to extract the final oil.
51. Rose Water - exactly that; water infused with roses. Smells amazing.
52. Tile - Moroccan Tile is absolutely gorgeous. You can find it in mosques, in houses, in hammams, anywhere.
53. Carpets - Carpets are also a well known Moroccan specialty. The types and method of production is different throughout the country.
54. Agdal - the posh, shopping district of Rabat that I go to school in
55. Kebibat - the more middle class residential neighborhood that I live in
56. Hay Riad - the upper class residential neighborhood
57. Donkeys - You see them occasionally in Sale
58. Horses - somehow fit pulling carts through the Fes Medina, not sure how
59. Camels - saw two outside of Marjon before Eid
60. Marjon - a HUGE supermarket that carries almost everything. The easiest one to get to is about a 45min tram ride away
61. Carrefour - a smaller, more common French supermarket chain
62. Cats - stray cats are EVERYWHERE
63. Dogs - stray dogs lie around as well, but are generally considered dirty
64. Turtles - little turtles are sold in the Medina, I've almost stepped on a couple
65. Olives - another essential Moroccan food. Once you get out of the city, olive trees line the highways.
66. Olive Oil - best I've ever tasted
67. Dates - dried dates are delicious and are eaten all the time
68. Figs - When figs are in season they're eaten fresh, but dried figs are eaten year round
69. Doors - in the Medina and older houses, doors can be huge with beautiful ornate carvings
70. Palm Trees - everywhere you look
71. Avocado juice - delicious, could be a meal in itself
72. Orange juice - freshly squeezed and perfect for after the hamam
73. Pottery - whether it's the blue and white pottery from Essaouira, or the reddish clay pottery used for couscous and tagine dishes, Moroccan pottery is truly beautiful
74. Silver - introduced by the Andulusians, Morocco is also home to beautiful silver
75. Cedar - From the forest surrounding Azrou and Ifrane in the Middle Atlas, this wood is used to make all sorts of things from little jewelery boxes to wooden camel figurines.
76. Monkeys - the cedar forest by Azrou is full of them!
77. Traffic - crossing the street here is no task for the faint hearted.
78. Sheep - we sacrificed one for Eid and the mountains around Oum Rabia was covered with them
79.Double Feullie - For some reason my teachers are extremely strict about exactly what kind of paper we use. Double Feullie is two pieces of paper that together make a large folder type sheet.
80. Harassment - get it everyday on the streets. You've just got to ignore it and not let it affect your day
81. English Classes - every Saturday I help teach English for 4 hours
82. Rain - when it rains here, it RAINS
83. Nutella - I might not have peanut butter, but at least I have nutella every morning
84. Pigeons - they're always in front of the train station in Centre Ville, don't ask me why
85. Roof - I love roof culture! It's so nice sometimes to just go up to the roof to hang up my clothes to dry, the view is spectacular! I can see the ocean on one side, and all the way to Hay Riad on the other!
86. Green is Better - a salad bar. My favorite place to splurge when I'm dying for fresh vegetables
87. Shebekia - super sweet cookies with sesame seeds. Simultaneously the best and worst thing in the world.
88. Fridays - COUSCOUS!
89. Wednesdays - We're in the French system so we get out of school at 12
90. Pastilla - yet another pastry. Could be filled with anything from fish to cinnamon and sugar
91. Darija - Moroccan Arabic. We take classes once a week, yet I still only speak shwiya Arabia
92. Arabic Script - still don't know the alphabet other than alif and ba
93. Berber - language spoken by the Amazighir or Berber people. Mainly in the mountains
94. Swoof - a paste made of ground nuts and honey. Given out at baby showers.
95. Bargining - Still having trouble significantly lowering the price of different items
96. Hassan Tower - famous monument in Rabat, but I actually haven't been over there yet
97. Meditel - my phone carrier here. Pay as you go
98. Pickled Lemons - had one the other day and it was pretty good
99. Rhobes - bread in Darija
100. Rabat - my home for the past 100 days, and more to come!

Phew! Finally done! That was a lot harder than I expected, so I'm sorry if it was really random. I cannot believe that I've been living in Morocco for 100 days! It feels like so much longer and so much shorter at the same time. So much has happened to me in the past 100 days, and each day is a new adventure. I can't be more thankful for YES Abroad for giving me this opportunity, my host family for being so welcoming, and my family back home for supporting me every step of the way! Love you all and happy 100 days!!!!


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