In Morrocco it is customary for visitors to come at anytime to visit. They do not call first and they may decide to sleep over. The host is expected to cook for the visitor and make him as comfortable as possible. At the very least the host is expected to give cookies and tea, most often bread with cheeses, fruits, butter, etc.... A hosts will cancel any plans that she may have had if a visitor shows up and entertain the visitor. As you can imagine this can be very stressful for a host, but it is consider highly insulting if the hosts tells a visitor she has plans. The visitor feels insulted and will tell everyone how badly she was treated (I told my mother-in-law, who cares let them talk) one night we are all discussing this phenomenon as my husband is explaining to his Mom that he is not going to feel obligated to rearrange his schedule to accomodate visitors. (We decided in america that we were not going to spend our vacation sitting in the house visiting). She admits that the culture norm is overwhelming and she herself is very stressed out by it but feels she has
to comply. Its seems my dear mother-in-law finds it impossible to say no. (mind you she takes care of her 3 children with autism with no help). We are all trying to explain to her that she has to stop it. My father-in-law tells us that a woman who had come earlier called previously to ask my mother-in-law to borrow money. My mother-in-law tells her yes to come and get it, my father in law says she doesnt even have any money to give the lady when she comes. We all laugh. I tell her she is going to have a line of people waiting to come eat. They tell us story after story of people just coming over. She says people will just call her and say they are coming in a half hour for lunch and she has to stop whatever she is doing and prepare lunch, and we are not talking a PB&J sandwich people. I told her you know what my mother would do if someone called her and told her they would be over in a half hour for lunch? She would say, great! what are you bringing. She laughed but couldnt believe it.
ok so this particular day my husband decided that he would take the whole family out to dinner. Most activities are after sunset because its so hot during the day. My husbands fathers aunt drops by, she is about 70 years old. she lives about 5 minutes away. She is winded from climbing the stairs, she sits and visits with us. She is there from 3:00 in the afternoon untill 8:00 pm. Well at 8:00 pm my husband announces to his mother, aunt Hesna and his father that they have to go prepare themselves as we are going out to eat. He told his dads aunt (Toria) that he had made these plans previously, but if she would like to come visit him after Maghrib the following day he would love to visit some more. I was not in the room when this happened. But I heard all the commotion when the aunt left. My husband said when he made the announcement they all looked shocked he said he never saw his fathers face red before but it did turn red. When the aunt left they were all talking about it, after the shock wore off. Khalti Hesna was laughing
Nadj & Abdullah Ghireb
A Ghireb-traditional water carrier- wears metal cups and sells drinks-offers to sell us a drink we decline but tell him well pay for a picture instead
hysterically & my mother-in-law was releived. They told my husband to ask me did I think it was a rude thing to do considering how the aunt struggled to come up the stairs and she had planned on sleeping over. Those of you who know me know what my answer was! I said to my mother in law look how relieved you look, we are dressed and going out, if the aunt would have stayed, she (mother-in-law) would be in the kitchen banging pots, angry. we all laughed.
We went out ate some terrible food that nobody liked. They thought I would love it since the restaurant claimed to serve american & swiss cuisine. I knew just by mixing american & swiss together it would be terrible. My husband already prepped me and told me dont have a dissappointed face and ruin it for everyboy. I was actually the only person prepared for the worse and thats just what we got. There was nothing I recognized on the menu except for a Greek salad- we ordered it-Ingredients to a Greek salad: thick strips of mozzorella cheese, grated carrots; lettuce, tomato,mayonnaise for dressing- What the hell??? Fried steak & onions, sounds
good-except when we got it it had this white sauce poured all over it. Yuck! ok I know american food isnt all that great but come on. I had to stick up for my country and let them know this is in no way american food!!!!
Note: Taxis only take 3 people at a time so if we all go out we must take 3 taxis. Also me, my husband and 2 kids cannot get a taxi together because thats 4. We did sneak Asiyah in a couple of times but its hard. ALSO taxis do not like to pick up parties of 3 becuase they get one fare. If they pick up 3 single people going in the same direction then they have hit the jackpot, 3 fares. so taking a taxi can be taxing, hee hee.
the pictures posted in this blog are of the families night out and a day me & my husband took Abdullah over to the palace area called Millah
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