3 Things I'm Trying to Get Used to in Morocco

Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Casablanca, Morocco
(in no particular order)

1) The driving/drivers: Honking for all and any reasons, pedestrians walking in the middle of the street, drivers almost hitting peds, drivers almost hitting other cars, drivers going 80 mph on narrow side streets, several drivers making random u-turns, left turns or any kind of turn they want - whenever they want. We've all held our breaths more than a few times, to say the least.

2) Smoking inside buildings: I knew I'd have to expect this, since it is the norm in Europe and China. But still, it's hard to be sitting somewhere talking to someone in a meeting or eating and smoke is in your face. I have never smoked, and being in the presence of it too much can make me feel light headed. Americans aren't always the brightest, and we can be pretty ignorant, but I must admit, we got the "smoke ban" thing right. I won't take that for granted anymore!

3) Feeling "waited" on: Let me preface this by saying everyone, especially the Rotarians we have met, have taken extremely good care of us, and that has been wonderful. But I get this sense that when we're in someone's home or eating lunch or dinner in a hotel, that the maid or wait staff does too much for me. That makes me a little uneasy, but I'm getting used to it. Today at lunch I wanted some bottled water, so I reached for it to pour into my own glass. The waiter took it from me and did it himself. Maybe that is just customary here or I'm not used to "fine dining" or maybe I'm just too darn independent. I guess I was raised to think if I'm thirsty or need something, I should get it myself. :)
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