I went out with some friends tonight and we happened to round out the night chilling at a Dunkin Donuts. The guys working there happened to be…. MOroccan!
and I could tell as soon as I heard one of them speak ( my MOroccandar is awesome!…lol). They were so nice. Actually, I have met quite a few Moroccans in Boston, and am a bit surprised that I had not noticed them before. I met some at Subway sandwich shop I frequent and some more at an Auntie Anne’s (let’s not get into my fast-food eating habits…lol… this summer has been rough and on the go constantly).
What I have been reflecting on is how different the treatment I received in-country is from the way MOroccans here in the states have treated me. If I had met these people when I was languishing in Rabat’s old Medina, I would have been spared my mental and emotional stability
( no, I literally lost hold of these things for quite some time because of my MOrocco experience).
I always think about blogging about Morocco, but honestly it’s a wound so sharp and cut so deep that I’m not sure that opening that door to past so widely will help rather than hinder my healing process.
At any rate, my brief encounters with Moroccans in the states, their kindness towards me even before they know that I am Middle Eastern Studies person, or that I studied/lived in their country compounded with their excitement once they find out that I speak Arabic (or at least speak some Arabic..lol) leaves me a bit perplexed. Whenever people hear that I have been abroad they always want to know how my experience was, what the country and people were like. Describing Morocco has always been a slippery slope for me: melding cold objectivity with my fiery hot hatred for what I had to go through. Which perspective is the real one?
Who are the “real Moroccans?” the ones I meet here (and the admittedly few kind ones I had positive encounters with while in the country) or the evil and (insert epithet here) ones that made my daily life a living hell and question my sanity?
Returning to Morocco a year after my horrible experience did not really answer this question for me either. I guess the answer must simply be that both groups are. There are good and bad within any group/culture. But, this response seems trite, almost a punk of a compromise…lol.
I would like to think about it more, but I’m not sure I want to reflect on Morocco at-length anymore.