My Host Family

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Cayt Holzman
December 9, 2016

            My host family is so sweet. My host mom doesn’t speak any English, but since we both speak French, it doesn’t matter so much. In the mornings, she’s trying to get the kids ready for school, and in the evenings, she always is helping them with their homework. She doesn’t like to cook, and she likes to watch Turkish soap operas. I tried to follow them with her, but I can’t understand anything they’re saying. It’s tough to follow shows where all the plot action happens in the dialogue when you don’t speak the language. She hangs out with Fatima, the cook that the family hires. She lives in the house and is like part of the family. She does mostly all the cooking, and she likes to watch Moroccan Master Chef. I like watching Master Chef with her. It’s easy to follow because it’s the same concept as Master Chef in the States, except they speak Darija and cook French food.

            My host dad isn’t home a lot; he works in communications for the royal air force and sometimes he works 24 hour shifts. He looks all serious and official when he’s in his work uniform, but on his days off, you’d think he’s a totally different person. He has a really kind laugh, and the thing that makes him laugh the most is his daughter, Kenza.

            She’s nine years old and full of energy. She loves climbing all over her dad to make him laugh, and sometimes she’ll pout and refuse to eat her dinner unless he feeds her a couple bites here-comes-the-airplane style. She’s a really picky eater. At first, I was pretty worried that maybe she’s seen too much of the photoshopped pictures and models that come out of Europe and the U.S., but than one day Fatima made a chocolate cake and Kenza ate four pieces in the course of two hours.

            She does gymnastics and is constantly literally bouncing of the walls. She does flips of the couches and walks across the floor on her hands; part of me loves it and the other part is really scared she’s going to fall. Her other hobbies include jumping out from behind furniture to scare people, singing songs she made up, trying to get me to pronounce Arabic words correctly (a sinking ship), and laughing at English words. Her current favorite is “February”.

            My host brother just turned 13. He likes to watch American movies and play video games. He’s learning English, and he’s pretty good, but he still uses subtitles for the movies. He studies so much. He says he doesn’t like school, but he works really hard at it anyway. He also loves soccer; currently, Real Madrid is doing really well and he’s pretty excited about that. He’s for sure a teenager; he teases his sister and I all the time. His sister tries to hit him with her sandal. I don’t try to retaliate because, honestly, he’s pretty funny and I’m impressed that his English is good enough that he can make jokes at me.

            While I’ve been here in Morocco, their grandmother, who usually lives with them, has been visiting other family in the U.S. She comes back today and I’m going to be able to meet her when I go home for lunch. I’m really excited; everyone says she’s really nice and you can tell everyone in the family has been anticipating her return.


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Cayt Holzman

<p>Hi! I&#39;m Cayt and I study anthropology and French at Penn State. I&#39;m studying abroad to further my education and I&#39;m here to share my experiences with anyone who wants to read them.</p>

2016 Fall
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