I just practiced my Arabic for a good hour or two. I can now count from one to ten, introduce myself, go through the basic greeting and say goodbye in the dialect of Arabic that works in Northwest Africa. I feel like I need to as much or more language practice compared to the other people here. I have always had a difficult time learning languages. I just don’t enjoy memorizing. But I am—slowly—getting it down. I am going to have to do this every day to keep up with the lesson. If all goes well, I won’t be kicked out when training ends because I just can’t get by with the language.
I have continued journaling on a daily basis. This will be my main form of writing while I am here. During my training, I doubt I will get by fiction writing done. Once I get into my two year service that may change. That isn’t until late March. I still need to master the language to the best of my ability.
Today is my girl’s 21st birthday. It has been especially hard today being away from here. Part of me wants to be where she is. Part of me wants her to be here. In the end, it honestly does not matter where we are. I just want to be with her and celebrate with her. As I complete my fourth day of 800, I can’t help but imagine what the next 796 days will be like without her.
With 30 days until I leave for Morocco, two things are on my mind. First and foremost is the girl I am set to leave behind. I know I’m going to leave my family and friends behind…but I don’t entirely regard that a bad thing. Although I will miss my friends and family, I know they will be here for me when I get back. When it comes to romance, life works a little differently. We know full well that we can’t ask each other to wait. It really isn’t sane to expect a 27 month long-distance relationship to last off of a one-month romance. A part of me desperately doesn’t want to risk losing her. That part want to stay behind. The other part of me reminds me that everything I’ve ever wanted (except romance and a family) is offered by the Peace Corps. Ambitious friend. Helping people. Travel. Help towards a great job. I can not expect either of us to wait…but I can hope. Still, I cannot help but imagine my life if I decide not to leave her.
One other thing is on my mind. Arabic. I am not great at languages. In 30 days, I will be thrown into an intensive 8-week course where Arabic and the culture of Morocco will be taught. I need to get a good head start. In order to get going, I am going to force myself to work on it every day until I leave. Today is focused on skowering the internet for ideas on how to start learning the language. Tomorrow will focus on buying a couple language books (and a tourist book of Morocco) so that I can get a real start on my studies. I will let you know how it goes. I may even try to write some Arabic poems or Haikus.
Here is today’s update from my teenage past. Some of these poems are a bit embarrassing (this one included). It almost looks like I wanted it to be a song rather than a set poem. It sounds like a crappy pop song.