On the Cushion: 10 Days in Silence

Gosh. It’s been five days now since I completed my first 10-day silent Vipassana meditation course and I’m still struggling to put the experience into words. As with all intense experiences, the rush of it fades quickly with time, so I fear that the longer I wait, the less able I’ll be to really capture any of it. It already seems like a lifetime ago. So, I’ll do the best I can now and not let the perfect be the enemy of the good (one of my favourite phrases these days). Continue reading

Breaking Fast: Ramadan in Morocco

Day 14. 1:33pm. Already hungry and I’ve been thirsty since I woke. No headache, though (yet), and I’m not too dizzy, so I’ll take it.

It’s a weird thing, this Ramadan. Everybody talks about it as if it’s this beautiful, enjoyable time… until it actually is Ramadan, and then we just talk about our various states of discomfort, or don’t say anything at all (and presumably suffer in silence). Continue reading

Kept in Guantanamo: The case of Omar Khadr

Most days, I am so grateful for the technology that allows me to stay in touch while I’m living abroad.

However, some mornings, I still feel the distance. I feel the 8 hours time difference, when I need to talk to somebody, but I know my friends and family won’t be awake for another 6 hours, at least. And even then they’re getting up and going to work, so not even fully available to talk. Continue reading

À la Capitale: my move to Rabat

It’s just after 9am, and here is a list of some of the things I’ve already done this morning:

  • Watched the moon set and the sun rise – somehow I fell asleep at 8:30 last night, so I was up crazy early!

Continue reading

Back in the Kingdom: Returning to Maroc

So after some mishaps in transportation to the airport, I managed to make it out of France and back to Morocco (oddly, no questions asked about my new passport!)

My unintended yet remarkably comfortable sleeping spot in the Aix-en-Provence train station (normally closed at night, so I had the place to myself!)

My unintended yet remarkably comfortable sleeping spot in the Aix-en-Provence train station (normally closed at night, so I had the place to myself!)

So far, I’m not nearly as anxious as I thought I might have been. Though, I’ve yet to make the transition to Rabat, where I’ll actually be living and working. Continue reading

In the French Alps: le deuxième workaway

Oh man, I have been dying to write this post. But I’ve been too busy enjoying myself to sit down on my computer and do it! And honestly, I tend to only write when I’m confronted with extremely challenging things that I need to deconstruct a bit. And there’s finally been none of that! But the absence is worth noting… Continue reading

In the south of France: getting away from my Workaway

I saw a moth the other night, and it reminded me of my mom. Specifically, how terrified she was of them, and how she would shriek if she happened to find one trapped inside our house, helplessly beating itself against a lightbulb, trying to escape.

They often remind me of her, but this night I stopped and said hello; not to the moth, but to my mom. Continue reading

Moving on: breaking up with the hammam (and thinking about France!)

Bssaha. To your health. Or, more accurately, thank god you bathed. 

It’s a common expression, used not only to “cheers” you and your renewed sense of self-worth, but largely to acknowledge all things new; clothes, meals, haircuts, baths…

Which is to say that it’s about time I talk again about the hammam. Continue reading