It’s difficult to admit, but before I came to Morocco, there were only a handful of people I felt like I had genuine support from. Whenever I told people where I would be spending my fall semester, it seemed like the first thing they said was “is it safe?” or “be careful” but it never seemed as though it was coming from a genuine place of care, but rather a place of concern. Perhaps such fears stem from the fact that Morocco is considered a developing country in Africa, or American rhetoric has made people narrow-minded about Muslim-majority countries. However, despite the doubt surrounding me, something in me told me that it couldn’t be true. There was no way people who have had no connection with a country could generalize a truth about it. It was unfair. It was ignorant.
Though I had no idea what to expect coming into Morocco, I can say that after having spent over two months here, my gut feeling was right.
Morocco is a country rich with history and culture. It is a place where strangers welcome you with mint tea, warm hugs, and hours of laughter despite strong language barriers. It is a place where community is deeply valued and everyone thinks of their neighbor before themselves. It is a place where I have been challenged to deconstruct my preconceived notions and see the world around me for what it is.
Below is a short film I created to capture my thoughts, emotions, and reflections. It was inspired by a poem I wrote the first week I was here.
“A Different Universe” – Enjoy!