It’s a long way from Massachusetts to Morocco, and I’m not just talking about flight hours and time zones. The sounds and sights are a world away from my daily life at home.

As I sit in my son’s apartment typing this, I hear him conversing in Arabic with Abderhamane, his landlord. Earlier this morning I awoke to the eerie sound of the call to prayer reverberating throughout Tinghir, the small city where my son lives and works as a Peace Corps volunteer.

In a little while we will be joining Abderhamane and his family for lunch. In fact, my son’s fantasy of doing a lot of cooking with us while we are here may remain just that as we have similar invitations for almost every day of our visit. Friends, neighbors, and parents of students all want to welcome the “mama and baba” of Karim — the name he was given when he arrived here.

I have loads of photographs to share that show many of the colors and textures you have come to expect from Morocco.



There’s that special shade of blue covering the boats and doorways of Essauoira, a beach town where we spent an amazing two days…


Photo by Paul Syversen

Photo by Paul Syversen

…and that you see every time you look up…


or down.


Then there’s the food.

Moroccan picnic

Moroccan picnic.

All of that is easy to share through photographs, but what will be more difficult to describe is the feeling of welcome I have had from all the people we’ve met here.

Because my son has lived here for a year and has many friends, we are meeting the real people of Morocco — not just those who make their living from tourism.

Their warmth and generosity is unlike anything I have experienced anywhere else. I hope to share those experiences — which can’t be summed up by photographs — in future posts.