Music makes a glorious comeback

Welcome everyone to this week’s blog entry: as usual it’s a collection of musings on life, development work, music, art, and friends in wonderful Morocco. I’d hoped to have posted some snippets of poetry, photos and thoughts for you during the week, but as usual my busy schedule seems to have gotten in the way! Rest assured though that as long as you keep reading and commenting I will make every effort to share with you more regularly the wonderful goings on here…To this, I’m really enjoying your feedback (both on the blog and via email)! It’s always an encouragement for me to know I have your readership, so if you feel like making a comment or starting a conversation, please do!

Well this week you may be pleased to hear that I have finally taken my guitar out and introduced it to everyone at the centre. As I had mentioned briefly at the end of my last post, my unintentionally secret “other life” was let out of the bag by Iqbal, who had gathered a veritable crowd around her computer last week to cheer on a video of me performing at my CD launch in March. I walked in on the boisterous throng to screams of “Artiste! Artiste! Enchanté! Enchanté!” and many extended arms. I’m not really sure why it took this glorious affirmation to convince me that the poor old forgotten thing had been gathering dust for too long. Thankfully, it forgave me straight away, greeting everyone with its usual warmth and friendliness and making immediate friends. I’ve spent the last four working days giving impromptu performances all over the place: for the children, staff and of course our many visitors. I must say it really feels so good to be playing again, and even better that I have an attentive audience. I hadn’t realised that it’s actually been over two months since I’ve played properly…I’ve really been missing it!

Hilariously, as seems often to be the case here, it has been arranged, and I have been told, that this week I will be giving a ‘very, very exciting’ concert with a Moroccan Oud player (who incidentally is also a teacher at the school where we painted the mural), Abdellah Lamine. This concert will be a celebration of both traditional and modern music, and, if other musical events I have happened upon here are anything to go by, it promises to be a lot of fun. I’m envisaging we’ll be helped along by some of the kids from the centre who are talented djembe players, and by the remaining kids and adults who will make for a more-than-adequate back up dance troupe! I’m very excited, and even more so as I plan to use my powers of persuasion to convince Abdellah to teach me the Oud!

As I write this, I have just come back from the hammam (see last week’s entry) and once again am feeling considerably relaxed. Unfortunately, over the last week I was also bitten by a small army of mosquitoes and fleas (I will not be patting dogs in the street anymore). Actually, I probably enjoyed the fierce scrubbing at hammam more than usual today for this very reason. Despite the annoyance, I do enjoy the fact that the vectors are not infectors and I can thus get bitten all I like without contracting malaria, dengue fever, or any other form of horrible life threatening disease. Bonus!

It’s just a short entry tonight, as it’s dinner time now, and I plan to write a separate update on work tomorrow. Lots has been going on, with some really positive progress – though of course not without challenges!

But for now…a delicious Moroccan lentil soup which I must get the recipe for, and lots of delicious Middle Eastern yoghurt which is impossibly cheap. I have genuinely cleaned out the fridge of my man who owns the shop next door. Needless to say he finds it quite amusing!

Bisous,

Briony

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6 Comments

  1. Maddy 'cousin extraordinaire' Ross

     /  June 4, 2012

    If I’m going to be honest, I did celebrate the news of your lentil soup by doing a little (context appropriate) fart. Sorry everyone but I know Bri would want to know! xxx

    Reply
    • burningthecouch

       /  June 4, 2012

      You are correct. I would never have been the same if I’d found out later I’d missed out on that piece of information. Thank you, Madeline, for your thoughtful and inspiring comments. You are always welcome on this blog.

      Reply
  2. Sarah

     /  June 6, 2012

    Abdallah Lamine! I can’t wait to hear how that concert goes and see the photo album that will surely appear on FB practically immediately. My bet is that he’ll graciously teach you the Oud. Best of luck!

    Reply
    • burningthecouch

       /  June 8, 2012

      Your comment made me actually “LOL” (note: only ever an appropriate comment to make ironically, e.g. in response to comments regarding zealotry and social media). Very funny. I trust it will be lovely as well, and will keep you updated if I ever hear anything about it again…!

      Reply
  3. Sue Sturges

     /  June 8, 2012

    Still getting over Maddy’s ‘expression of interest’! Surely takes after her mum, Susie – heh-heh.

    Reply
    • burningthecouch

       /  June 8, 2012

      Both of them, I imagine, can pack a mean one, Sue. Members of the Mackenzie family can boast many and diverse a talent! I hear that Maddy is learning the alphabet, if you know what I mean.

      Reply

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