I thought I'd give you a glimpse as to how Morocco has changed me. Now I could write a really introspective post on how it's changed me from the inside. But that's not what I'm gonna do. See, the other day when I was cooking I caught a glimpse of the permanent reminders on my arm on my time here in Morocco. And that's when I decided to write this post about how Morocco had change my outsides from head to toe.
Let's start at the top and go down.
My hair. I haven't colored it in about a year now because I completely fried it with permanent color. Because Morocco doesn't have the gentler semi-permanent color I would use in the states here. Which is why my hair is a few different colors right now. highlighted by about 5 gray hairs right up front. Which somehow don't show up in this photo. Then, I haven't had my hair cut in probably at least 6 months for a number of reasons. One of which is the inability to clearly communicate what I want with the person cutting my hair. Really, that's hard enough to get across when we're both native English speakers. So the result? My hair looks like this. Also, I would just like to explain that my hair is still partially wet in this photo, not greasy. Even though I don't style it, I do wash it.
Moving down to my shoulders. I admit it, I've never had good posture. But since we've moved here it's gotten even worse. Because now I do everything on the computer so I'm constantly hunched over it. When I'm not writing, I'm doing my banking, shopping on-line, making travel arrangements, reading the news there or watching old episodes of 60 minutes there. Quite simply, I've become a hunchback.
Now to those two permanent reminders of Morocco, the scars on my arms. The one closest to my hand is from burning myself getting enchiladas out of my super tiny Moroccan oven. Thank god I never tried to cook a turkey in there. Oh wait, I did try to fit a boar leg to no avail. The one further up is from splattering duck grease when I pan fried some breasts and then made a super simple orange sauce from orange marmalade, a little chopped onion, chicken broth and some minced ginger. It's seriously delicious. Probably more so if you aren't nursing an injury from the incoming mortars of scalding, liquefied duck fat.
I went to a Moroccan dermatologist once who scolded me about not using enough sunscreen. (She obviously doesn't know me well.) And then she proceeded to tell me to wear gloves while driving to protect my hands from the sun. Which is why at this time of the year you see a lot of Moroccan women driving whilst wearing white gloves. It's not a homage to Mad Men. I, however, did not heed her advice. Which is why I'm starting to get age spots on my hands from the intense Moroccan sun. Maybe I should really rock that 1960's style with some white gloves after all.
There was a time in high school when my belly was so flat it was actually concave and my ribs stuck out. It was completely gross. But, with a good diet, working out and a metabolism that has gone from a sprint to a Sunday afternoon stroll, I filled out. But while it looks healthy on the outside, it's a different story inside. I'm eating for two, maybe even more. I don't know how to count how many parasites you have. I thought I had rid myself of them. Unless what I have now are amoebas, which I don't know how to count either. But, I bet my intestines look like a pristine unlitered highway. I know this because I spend more than my fair share of time here...
And let me assure you I use a lot of paper, the toilet brush and that pressurized hose which is the greatest Moroccan invention of all time. Which probably isn't Moroccan at all, it was probably invented by a French guy who brought it over here after he experienced his first unsanitary squat potty. So then the greatest Moroccan invention remains couscous.
We're down to my knees already, which are constantly bruised. Mostly that's from the push ups Sara makes me do. Which I would complain about, but if I do then she'll make me do boy push ups. So I don't. At least from this angle you can't see the hair on my legs, another byproduct of Morocco. And I think we all know, a covered leg is an unshaven leg.
Lastly, my toes. Before I moved to Morocco I had never had a pedicure. I don't like painted nails as a general rule. But, I have been known to get them done a few times while I'm here and I do it for one reason. The company. I got this particular pedi when I was with my friends Faith and Jenny and we all got the same color on our toes. Now weeks afterward it's chipped and looks like crap which is one of the reasons I don't like painted nails in the first place. But I've decided to keep it on all summer, no matter how bad it looks. Because it will remind of Morocco, that day at the spa and the friends I shared it with. You see today Jenny gets on a plane and moves far away and our trifecta spreads far and wide. But, long after that polish has worn away, the permanent mark on my heart will remain on the inside.