Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make a blog post during my time in Morocco, so I thought a reflection was in order. I could talk about the surreal feeling of traveling from deserts sands to snowy mountain caps within a few hours. I could also talk about the art and communication of bartering with the local vendors. I even could go on about the amazing mosaic and marble factories who create some of the most stunning art in the world with only their hands. I never thought I would experience any of these amazing things, but I decided to post about a universal truth I learned 4,000 miles from home.
A resounding fact left in my mind is simply that people are people where ever you go. The landscapes, clothing, food, art, and culture as a whole were quite different in Morocco, however the human interactions and behaviors I saw and got to be apart of were oddly familiar. I witnessed families who invited our group into their homes for tea and food and there was a comforting kindness and sense of community that was awesome. I also encountered vendors and salesmen who would try to swindle and leave you none the wiser. In Marrakech we even witnessed a staged fight as a diversion for pick pocketing. The massive metropolises of Casablanca and Marrakech were mecca business towns operating all day and all night. Then there were the smaller farming towns who moved at their own pace. These examples may be extreme on either end of the spectrum, but it was amazing to see and experience a culture so different and yet so familiar.
I would like to thank Shenandoah University for offering this once in a lifetime learning experience and I would like to thank Abdel and my entire GCP group for making the experience so ‘awesome!’