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they call me “meskina”

5 October, 2010

This evening, I met some of my neighbors.

It played out like this:

I am in the middle of attempting to change the lock on my front door, at the street level.  I have already purchased the necessary Phillips screwdriver and managed to communicate to the shopkeeper at the hardware hanoot that I’ll be back soon with my old lock to exchange for a new lock, and things are going smoothly until I realize that the one  remaining screw is not coming out.

After realizing that the faulty screw is not going to budge, I pick up my phone to dial a friend for assistance.  But what’s that?  My phone is out of minutes.

No worries, as I carry an extra card on me to “recharge” my phone.  Text the code to 555.. and receive only the notification that my text will not go through.  Mumtaz (“perfect” with an extra helping of sarcasm).

I attempt to reassemble my lock, but cannot get things to realign just so, and when I close the door, it stays shut, effectively locking me out, even though I have my keys in my hand.

I fight with the door a bit, and am noticed by thirty or so of the neighborhood kids.  They gather around, offering advice in a few different languages.. none of which I’m fully understanding.  The majority of them also seem to think that the situation is hilarious.  Instead of crying like I want to, I laugh too.

A few women happen to be walking down the street and can’t help but notice poor little me, my non-functional door, and a throng of children.

My new friend, A., promptly takes my hand and kisses both my cheeks, Moroccan style.  She then leads me, by hand of course, to her house a few blocks down the street.  Here, I am introduced to her daughters and her mother, and to a shop keeper who she asks to help me.

We return to my home, and the shop keeper wastes no time in prying open the door and taking out the old lock.  I had yet to purchase the new lock, so he tells me to give him money.

“B’ŝHaal?” I ask.

To which he replies, “ma3raftŝ.”

Luckily, I happened to have 40DH in my pocket, which funnily enough, was the exact cost of a new lock.

He takes my money, rides off on his bike, and returns a few minutes later, new lock in hand.

The new lock is installed and I am left with five shiny new keys and the question “ŝnu smtik?”.

Smiti Meskina.

Nukta?

No, no joke.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. The Husband permalink
    5 October, 2010 22:43

    So…are you going to try the second-floor lock tomorrow?

  2. The Mother permalink
    6 October, 2010 04:43

    Maybe some playtime is needed. Find one of your American children’s book, go outside and seek the children. If you sit and read, they will come. Enjoy the day! As always, I love you and miss you dearly.

  3. Pops permalink
    6 October, 2010 05:19

    ….or you can always come home!!!

  4. 6 October, 2010 10:59

    Bummer. But, way to resolve the problem AND make a joke out of it. Now, can you teach me to make those funny characters on my blog? xo.

  5. Gma permalink
    8 October, 2010 13:47

    Oh Meskina, You make my sunshine . I am enjoying following you in your journey.

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