I never expected to have family in Morocco until I met Fatima, Hicham, and Samira. Fatima, my host mother is an incredibly selfless and cheery woman who loves laughing and making others feel warm inside. I began to forget what hunger felt like during my stay because of how delicious and frequent the meals were. It takes a while to get used to but is also very sad and painful when taken from you.
Hicham is the ideal brother and friend. He is also extremely selfless and would always do anything to make me feel like I was part of the family. If he planned to play soccer with all of his friends, he would cancel it without hesitation to walk me to the instructors house. When we would walk on the street, we couldn’t go a block without running into somebody he was friends with, it was as if he was famous. His English was limited so he would introduce me to all of his English-speaking friends and we would all be able to communicate and I would feel part of the community.
In the last four days, I was introduced to my host sister, Samira, who could speak English very well, which was part of the reason we got along very easily. She was in college for most of the time but came back and acted as if we had been friends forever, constantly asking about my life and where I had been and where I planned to go. She was easily one of the most curious and fun people I’ve met.
The fact that I was able to feel so comfortable and happy in a place so wildly different from my own home makes me smile. I hope that everyone can have an experience similar to my own so that they can also know that family can be found all over the globe.