Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's Been a Long Time ...

... since I posted anything on my blog. Don't know why. Maybe I've been doing too much other writing and didn't have anything left to say. I've been writing for Cafe Clock's blog and editing translated copy for a new online newsletter called "What's On in Fes". But here I am. Ready to spew a few paragraphs about life, my state of mind and any random observations that happen to occur while I'm recollecting.

I have had a few moments of fame. There is a new, online television program called 100% Fes ( and it's all about the best of Fes, including profiles on local personalities. Well, I am one such personality and they did a segment on my belly dance classes. There is also a brief interview about my life in Fes. This video, along with another entited "Three Steps in Three Minutes" is posted on YouTube. So far, they've garnered a collective 200 views. No great shakes but it's fun to see a small portion of my weekly routine captured on camera and have a place to send my friends and family as a way of connecting and communicating what's going on in my life.

Cafe Clock has been closed for a week now in order to expand their kitchen. I have to hand it to the owner, Mike Richardson. He just continues to create and thrive and metamorphasize. I've missed having a ready place to eat, drink, relax and commune but they will open again around the end of this week. But I won't be here ...

... the annual ALL ALC CONFERENCE takes place this weekend in Agadir. The journey there will begin at 6:15 am this Friday. A mini van will pick up the teachers who reside in the medina. We'll meet up with all the other teachers from Fes at the airport. Then on to Casblanca and a connecting flight to Agadir. We will be in Agadir for 3 full days attending conferences (the educational book publishers provide several workshops a day and they are usually pretty good) and there will be activities and dinners throughout the long weekend. The weather should be a lot warmer than here in Fes. The hotel we are staying in is right by the ocean so the air will be brisk and clean for walking along the oceanside promendade. I am looking forward to the change of scenery and a break from the routine of teaching.

Life in the medina is the same but the days are short. Shops close early because of the cold nights and it's difficult to get out of bed in the morning let alone undress for a shower. The days begin late and end early. It is cold and there has been little rain. But today, a rain is falling and in half an hour I must begin preparations for school.

I have a 3 hour Beginning 3 class and soon I must get my head around the lesson for the day. I think of my teaching as a performance of sorts. I am the director of the class' activities and I must entertain as well as inform. I use my enthusiasm and plan a variety of activities; I cajole and act theatrical using different accents. I tell stories about my culture and I ask questions about Moroccan culture. And all the while I try to complete the learning objectives for the week. Sometimes it's great fun. Sometimes it is an exercise in classrooom management. But mostly it's fun and gratifying.

So, it's time to shift into teaching mode. The day is quickly passing.