Monday, September 12, 2011

Rachael's wedding part I

As always after a long time away from this blog it feels good to be back!

Rachael is a member of my volunteer group who came in with me and 61 others in September 2009. Rachael was also a member of my 5 person community based training group in El Kbab, so the two of us spent a lot of time together during our beginnings in Morocco.
David, Rachael, myself, Yorda, and Chris in September 2009

Some volunteers during service happen to find the love of their life in the country they are serving. Sometimes in another Peace Corps volunteers or sometimes in a local member of their town.

Rachael found Hassan in her small town of Mejjat.

Having made one of the biggest transformations of our group Rachael decided to take the plunge with Hassan and she invited a few of us to her wedding to share in the celebration with her.

Five of us girls came in the day before the wedding. Rachael was getting her henna done that day. A tradition for Moroccan brides.

Rachael's family had just arrived from America that day as well. Her parents, brother, and aunt came to celebrate her Moroccan wedding with her.

That night was our American night to let loose and pay homage to some of our American traditions. Namely taking shots and playing trashy bachelorette party games!

The catch was Rachael's bachlorette night also included her mother, father, brother and aunt. What really should have been an awkward situation turned out to be one of the most funny and memorable nights in Morocco for me.

Rachael's family had picked up some bottles of alcohol at the duty free store in the Newark airport so we were well stocked and ready for shots. Once all the Moroccan family members left Rachael's house the bottles came out. Rachael's brother, Steven, who is 21, had a bottle of Finlandia vodka which he so generously shared with everyone.We decided to take a few shots (yes all Rachael's family included) as we went around the room giving our best wishes to Rachael. When it was my turn I told her how much she had grown from when I first met her and how honored and happy I was to be there to support her.

Hassan's family was so graciously bringing us dinner that night and our drinking took place both before and after our dinner came. Since drinking is illegal in Islam and frowned upon by many Moroccans we didn't want any of them to see us drink. We were right in the middle of toasting Rachael, shots in hand when we heard the doorbell ring. All 10 of us inhaled our shots like we were 16-year-olds not wanting to get caught by our parents. Hilarious.

Donnielle and Yorda had prepared some games earlier before they came. The first one was a variation on the game Balderdash where all players hear a word and they have to write down what they believe the definition of the word is. Instead of words Yorda and Donnielle looked up various sex acts on the urban dictionary and upon hearing each one we all had to write down our own description of it. So listening to the various descriptions of the "Mexican Avalanche" or the "Bulgarian Swan Dive" provided over an hour of entertainment.

Like I said before this could have been one of the most awkward situations ever, and in reality it kind of was, but the couple shots of vodka in all of us and the fact that we are in Morocco (where nothing can be awkward anymore) acted as buffers to ease the awkwardness. Rachael's family was awesome. It was her mom Susan encouraging the shots, and it was her father Rich who won the game!

That was the night before the wedding. Tune on on Wednesday to read about the day of the wedding.