Matta wyna? (what's up?)

(as a joke, one should reply: mashi shughnk! [none of your business!])
 
I find myself back at HUB mnb3d taqriban sin simana (after about two weeks) at CBT.
   

Gan ghas sin simana zid; mnb3d nkkin ad tsffart g nghar nna ad qqimgh d xdmgh sin isuggasen, enshalleh.  
(There is only two more weeks to go; afterwards I will travel to the place where I will stay and work two years, God willing.)

So I have two more days here at HUB (with the wondrous amenities that are internet access and showers), then seven days at CBT, then back at HUB for about five days, leading up to my swearing in as an official Peace Corps volunteer (PCV), enshalleh.

Part of the stipulation of becoming a PCV is taking a LPI - language proficiency interview - in which one must score at least Novice High. The categories are Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, and Superior. Apparently about 80% of PCTs score in the Intermediate level, but there are sublevels of Low, Medium, and High. 
  
 

Some of you might be wondering I do on a daily basis, so I'll answer your burning questions, but in Tamazight, as practice for my upcoming LPI.

Su'al; Mayd tskkrt ku yas g lmghrib dghi?
(Question: what do you do everyday in Morocco now?)

Ku yas da tnkkrgh g tmnya ql qsmayn, da ddugh s lbit lma, hashak, da ssirdgh ifasninu d aqmuinu. 
Every day I wake up at 7:50am and go to the bathroom, pardon, and wash my hands and face.
 
Mnb3d da ddugh s lkuzina, da ttsagh aghrum d zit, walakin mra mra da ttsagh aghrum d lkunfitur n lmishmash d zbda. 
Afterwards I go to the kitchen, eat bread and oil, but sometimes I have bread with apricot jam and butter.
  

Dima da tswigh atay n n3na3 nghd fliyu. 
Always (key word in Morocco: always) I drink tea with mint or fliyu (another herb). 
 
Mnb3d da 3ydgh s lbitinu, jm3gh lHwayjinu imik, ddugh s lbit lma, hashak, da ssirgh tughmasinu, d ddugh s lmdrasa. 

Then I return to my room, gather my belongings a little, go to the bathroom, pardon, and brush my teeth. And then I go to school.

[Along the way, I get to pass the beautiful tabi3a (nature) of my CBT site]: 

 


 

G lmdrasa llan stta mddn: nkkin d rbba3 mutaTwi3an yadnin, d lustadinu - ntta iga sg lmghrib d iHla bzzaf.

At school there are 6 people: myself and 4 other volunteers, and my teacher - he is from Morocco and very good.

Nukni nghr Tamazight d Taqafa as kult, sg ts3ud n sbaH ar stta u ns nghd sba3 n gid. Iga ighruzzif wass.
We learn Tamazight and culture all day, from 9 in the morning until 6:30 or 7 in the evening. It is a long day.

[Sometimes we go upstairs for a lesson - kind of to keep us alert and like sprite young grasshoppers]:

 
G 3shrin ymkn d ttlata n taduggat nukni da ntsh ghas lmakla imik: nkkin da tssagh aghrum d shklat nghd lkunfit nghd lframaj, d danun. Da tswigh lqha sik asku i nkkin lqha tungalt yuf lqha ns ns.

At 10;00 maybe and 3 in the afternoon we eat just a little food (break): I eat bread with chocolate or jam or cream cheese, as well as yogurt. I drink plain coffee, because for me, black coffee is better than half coffee, half milk.


Imkli yga taqriban Tnash. 
Lunch is at about 12:00
 
Kan tikkal da tssagh tajine, mra mra da tssagh dwaz, nghd tsuk-tsu. 
Sometimes I eat a tajine, sometimes I eat a dwaz (like a tajine, but instead of cooked in a tajine pot, it is cooked in a pressure cooker), or couscous.
  
G imkli llan luxdrt bzzaf: ghaliban llan batata, matisha, xizu; mra mra ibawn nghd dlbana. 
For lunch there is a lot of vegetables: most of the time there is potatoes, tomatoes, carrots; sometimes green beans or eggplant.
 
Ghaliban illa aksum: afullus nghd tifiyi. 
Most of the time there is meat: chicken or beef.
 
Mnb3d da tssagh disir: lbanan d limun s 3adi.

Afterwards I eat fruit/dessert (in Tamazight, these words are synonymous; fruit is considered expensive and a treat after a proper meal): bananas and orange normally   

Dart lmdrst/lmdrasa da l3bgh takurt nghd lfrizbi kan tikkal d arba bzzaf. I3jbi bzzaf. TaTsa bzzaf.
After school (anecdote: for a while in the U.S., there was a huge hoopla about how President Obama attended a "madrassa" when he was a child in Indonesia (and how terrible this was)...well I go to a "lmdrasa" as well, simply because the Arabic word for school is "lmdrasa"), I sometimes play soccer or frisbee with a lot of boys. I enjoy it a lot. Lots of fun.
 
Nkkin da ddugh s lbitinu, walakin ghas imik: ymkn xmsa minut: da amzgh lkarte n lmghrib d lkarte amrikani, UNO, d lkunashinu, d mktab Tamazight.
I go to my bedroom, but just a little: maybe 5 minutes: I take my playing cards from Morocco and UNO cards from America, as well as my notebook and Tamazight textbook.


Nkkin da l3bgh lkarte d utmainu: nttat ghurs tmnya asuggas, d ugmainu: ntta ghurs sttash asuggas.
I play cards with my sister - she is 8 years old - and my brother - he is 16 years old. 

Da sawalagh d lfamilainu imik d ttsagh imnsi 3ttr bzzaf - i nkkin - g 3ashrin u ns, nghd Hdash u tulut ymkn. Ghaliban da ttsagh tsuktsu d ibawn d ikurran.
I talk with my family a little and eat dinner really late - for me (at least) - at 10:30, or 11:20pm, maybe. Most of the time I eat couscous with green beans and (cooked) unripe figs.

Mnb3d da ddugh s lbitinu, da urugh i ljournal, da sskrgh traksyun imik, d da sfldgh musiqa imik. Da ssirdgh tughmasinu d da gngh g taqriban Tnash u rb3.
Later I go to my room, write in my journal, do push-ups a little, and listen to music for a little bit. I brush my teeth and go to bed at about 12:15.  
 
  


...
 
iHla bzzzzzzaf, n3am?
Really nice, yes? 

Quick anecdote, and then I'll click "Post" and call it a night: in Tamazight, the word "iHla" is an all-duty, all-purpose word that can mean "nice", "pretty", "friendly", "good", etc. 

Perhaps one day, I'll delve into some of the grammar of Tamazight, but iHla should be used when describing a masculine noun, whereas tHla should be used when describing a feminine noun. The big h, "H", is kind of like the "h" you might use when saying a really excited and emphatic "Hi!" in English: you exhale a lot of air and it comes from your diaphragm. 

Earlier I posted a video of my practicing Moroccan Arabic and went over this sound, but my articulation of the sound back then was pretty bad...one day, enshalleh, I'll post a new video of me speaking some Tamazight. 

I particularly enjoy saying words with the letter "q" and "H". They are distinct to Arabic and Berber; or put in another way, they are not used in English in any similar form or manner. 
 
I'm pretty good at the "q" sound now. 

Ladies, watch out. 

It's just what the doctor ordered