Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Ruth and Olly the Turtle

The past couple of days I've learned lots of things. Like:

Being whacked in the face by a spiky tree branch will give you a bruised nose and bleeding scratches across the face.
Elderly Moroccan women are awesome.
I love red peppers, and can easily eat a whole pepper raw as a snack. And they can be found here.
You can get icing sugar in Morocco!
Ski jackets are not necessary in Agadir, despite the fact that they are necessary inside my house.
Making knitted purses in different color combinations is really fun. And the possibilities endless.
Baby turtles pee on your hand when they are scared. And then try and bite you.

I've spent the last couple of days in various parts of my local region - some, I can name, and others I can't. On Saturday, I don't know where I was - some small village much smaller than mine, which I think is just a suburb of Ouled Teima, but it was quite far out, and I could never tell you how to get there. I was taken to see my host aunts' aunt, on their mother's side, who is awesome. My host aunts don't know how old she is (I would guess in her 80's, maybe even 90's?), but she gets around by walking literally doubled over - on her feet, but hands on the floor. I can barely even walk like that. And all she kept saying to me was that I was welcome there anytime I wanted.

Sunday I headed out to Taroudant, which was made a little harder by the road in to Taroudant being closed because of all the rain we've been having, so a thirty minute cab ride became an hour cab ride going the long way round. But some lovely views of the High Atlas mountains in the background. I met up with a couple of region mates, and went to one of their sites, which is a little outside of Taroudant. This volunteer works with an Argon oil association, which was really interesting to see. This was an education for me, which I can now pass on. Argon nuts have two shells - a outer shell that is easier to get off, and is eaten by animals (like tree climbing goats), then there is another shell inside, which is much harder to crack, but is cracked by whacking it with a big stone. Then, there is a little sliver of nut in there, which is they ground to a pulp, and the oil is squeezed out of that. So there's a lot of work, and nuts, that go in to making one bottle of argon oil. But it was really fun to meet all the women doing it.

Yesterday was Agadir with my (basically) site mates, who showed me yummy burgers, the closest thing to Best Buy in Morocco, where to go to shop without having to go to Marjane - and where I found good things like icing sugar, Carr's Water Biscuits and blue cheese. Yes, more blue cheese. Don't judge me.

And something else I've JUST learned in the last 10 minutes - I'm now the owner of a baby turtle called Olly. He is currently scared and hiding behind a table leg in a corner since the neighborhood kids just terrorized him. I went with my next door neighbors to the ruins of their family's old house again, and we found him in the field on the way there, and now he's in my house. He's tiny, so here's hoping I don't step on him in the middle of the night or something equally traumatizing.


1 comment:

  1. Yeah for getting a turtle! They are the best PC pets.