A Typical Day in Rabat

Rebekah Grafton
April 24, 2018

My days from Monday to Thursday are pretty long. Luckily, I have no class on Fridays so that makes for a nice long weekend! Here’s what a typical weekday is like for me here in Rabat.

I get up between 8:00 and 8:15. Most of my host family is already up and gone by this time, except for my host mom. I eat breakfast, get dressed, and get ready for the day. Usually, I leave the house between 9:20 and 9:30 to walk to the IES Abroad center.

I live right near the southwestern wall of the old part of the city and the IES Abroad center is located to the southeast in an adjacent neighborhood called Hassan. It takes me about a half an hour to walk to school. At this point I’ve learned three different routes and depending on the day I choose to walk along the medina wall, on a large avenue that boasts the Parliament building and the train station, or in between a cluster of hotels and a middle school.

I get to the center around 10am. If I don’t have class right away, I’ll take some time to socialize with my friends and get some homework done. Sometimes we have cultural activities in the mornings, such as dance classes or cooking demonstrations. Throughout the day I have 2 to 3 classes and on Tuesdays and Thursdays I have a meeting with my language partner, during which we spend about an hour discussing a topic in Arabic.

Since it takes so long to walk to the center and back, I don’t have time to go home for lunch, so my host mom prepares me a packed lunch to eat at the center. In between classes I try to get homework done, though if too many of my friends are around I usually spend more time talking than working. In the afternoon I run errands or head somewhere for a snack or a juice with some friends. There’s a hanoot, or small store, down the street from the IES Abroad center that sells melwi and we students are regular customers there.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays I have class at the center until 8pm. On Mondays and Wednesdays I leave to go to my internship in the evening. I’m teaching a beginner’s English class at an organization called Fondation Orient-Occident (East-West Foundation). The foundation supports migrants in Morocco and provides training and educational programs for migrants and non-migrants alike in the community. My classmate teaches an intermediate English class at the same time as me, so we catch a taxi together around 6pm. The foundation is about a 20-25 minute taxi ride from the IES Abroad center, and I love getting to see a different part of Rabat than the one I spend most of my time in. Unfortunately, I haven’t had much time to explore the neighborhood as I usually have class right before, but I’m trying to find a time when I can go just to walk around.

Our classes end at 8pm and then my classmate and I catch a taxi back to the old medina. When I get home I greet my host family, and we usually sit down to have dinner pretty soon after. Once dinner is finished, I’ll spend some time watching TV and talking with my host parents, and then I go upstairs to do homework. With my midnight bedtime, I’m usually one of the last ones in the house to go to bed, as many people in my host family get up early for work.

My week days are long, but now that the time has changed it is at least not completely dark until right before I get home. And despite the long days, it is nice to have settled into a routine.

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Rebekah Grafton

<p>I am a long-time bibliophile, choir nerd, and language lover who isn't really "from" anywhere. The closest thing I have to a hometown is Ambler, Pennsylvania, where I lived throughout middle and high school, but I also lived in England and Egypt as a child, and my parents now live in Connecticut I now go to college in Washington DC!</p>

2018 Spring
Home University:
Georgetown University
Ambler, PA
Francophone Studies
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