It gets cold here and other things I have learned since moving to Casablanca.

It’s been a while since I blogged about anything, but quite honestly I have had nothing to write about! We are just chugging along in our everyday lives, and we are busy being sick every other week!

Before moving here I honestly didn’t do a ton of research, and the limited research I did do was mostly focused on appropriate clothing choices for me. Surprisingly (to me) the clothes thing has been much less of a big deal than I expected, but I have learned other thing that I wish I had known before moving! In retrospect I should have searched out expat groups and asked questions beforehand, but I didn’t! So lesson learned for next time!

It gets colder here than I expected, especially inside because there is no central heating. We looked at average temperatures before we moved, but neither David nor I gave any thought to indoor temperatures. Admittedly we also came in thinking “it Africa so it will be hot” and it didn’t even occur to us that buildings wouldn’t have central heating! I recognize now that my lack of thought on the heating front, and my assumption that Africa would be hot is a pretty privileged western perspective. In fact many of my observations are that way, but that is a big part of why we are here. We wanted to learn, and grow, and gain a new perspective on the world. A perspective we didn’t feel we could truly gain while living in Seattle. Anyway it’s cold in our apartment, and if I had known that I wouldn’t have left the fuzzy slippers back in Seattle! The kids and I are going home for a visit in April and all I can think of right now are the warm things I will be bringing back to Casa with me on our return trip!

Right now in the middle of winter I really miss my dryer. We only have a washer (which I’m totally thankful we have), and I have racks of clothes hanging in the living room all the time! It take at least a day or two for anything to dry. It definitely means I think twice about washing things, and I’m trying to get the kinds to wear things several times before washing them. I really miss the summer sun and hanging everything out side. Last summer on the back patio I would hang everything up and come back an hour or two later to completely dry and warm clothes!

For me food has been a really positive unexpected thing! Vegetables and fruit are plentiful and cheap, which has been really great for our overall health as a family. And it has really expanded what my kids will eat! Processed food is more expensive here, and since we are on a pretty tight budget (so that we have plenty of travel money) I just don’t buy it! On average we spend less than 200dh a day and we have plenty of yummy things to eat on that budget. I also cook differently here, because we don’t have an oven! Not having an oven has really changed the way we cook, and it has expanded my repertoire for sure!

Fix it don’t replace it is much more the norm here, which I really like. There isn’t really recycling (like we think of in the states), but people are more likely to fix an appliance than to toss it (which I feel is opposite of the states). I got a zipper on a boot fixed for 10dh the other day and that likely would have cost me 10x more in Seattle! It’s just more affordable to get something fixed than to buy a new one.

Art supplies and unlined paper are expensive and especially the paper is harder to find. This is something I hadn’t really considered before coming here! We went through tons of paper in Seattle because it was easy to get and you just recycled it when the kids were done. I feel bad tossing it in the trash here so I’m hanging on to a lot of pictures that would have gone in the recycling before! Now I find myself hoarding the blank paper rather than handing it out freely! 😂 I sure this is also our privilege. We have time, energy, and the means to allow our kids to create a home. I know not everyone has that.

I think that’s all for now! I knew moving here would change our perspective. We really wanted that change and challenge, but the things I have gained a new perspective in here are strangely not really the things I expected. I kinda think it’s better this way. The things I think about are more ordinary than I expected, and I think that has to do with living here. We wanted to expand our horizons and really learn something new. I feel like we are getting that, but at the same time we are also just scratching the surface.

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