Thursday, July 26, 2012

Going Native in Chefchaouen

When we entered Chefchaouen, our bus was full of the sounds of our oohs and ahhs as we took in all the shades of blue painted across the city's buildings and homes. Each door and and wall revealed a new contrast of light and dark blue, and the cobblestone streets only added to Chefchaouen's charm.
During our two hours of free time, I wandered the narrow streets of the medina with my friends and decided to put my newly-learned Arabic to good use.

Since I'm obviously a tourist, the prices shopkeepers give me are usually much steeper than the prices they would give a native speaker. Although I'll never be able to completely avoid this problem, I decided I could try and do something about it by not revealing how much of a beginner I am. Through a combination of using as much Arabic as I could, finally knowing my numbers well, and acting confident even when I wasn't entirely sure what was going on, I was able to secure a really good price for some napkins for my mother. Even our Moroccan tour guide was impressed with the price I got!
Scoring such a good bargain as a result of my Arabic skills made me feel like a true Moroccan native.


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