The power of Habit and Morocco
Culture is strongly related to habits.
You, as a European or American, are used to seeing the value of a product translated into a currency in order to buy it. Your brain processes the price. First, comes the conversion, then the comparison with something similar, then you start to ponder on the actual value of the thing in your own life.
What if you do it differently?
Not knowing all of this, only the fact that you like it, you want it, you can maybe put a price on it. The Arabs will put your origin, your country on the first place and will associate it with the buying power of the country. Then there is the time and effort they put into making a thing. This also has a different value, because the power of habit strikes again. If they do something for such a long time, or they do it so many times, it will be easy for them.
The part of analyzing how much you want it is all that remains. This is where the bargaining begins.
See, you only have to forget about the habit of knowing a price before you buy something, forget to compare values based on prices.
Basically, you have to forget habits that are deeply rooted in your basal ganglia.
Some people love to break the routine and try to learn new things or relearn things they knew, just for the fun of it. Or they wanna blend in a new culture.
Can you also forget the weather conditions you are used to?
Is the weather also a power of habit? And the fact that you relate activities to it?
While in Morocco, the love-hate relationship is a constant.
It takes place in your brain so many times in one day, or maybe in one hour?
It’s way too hot, even for a sun lover like me.
It’s making you inactive and sticky.
It makes you want to stay more inside, or in the shades, makes you love air conditioning even if you hate it.
Makes you wear a hat or endure headaches.
How do people live here and how do they do it with so many clothes on?! A berber suit looks like its made of heavy materials that make you sweat. Or do they conserve a stable temperature?
How do people stay so calm while standing the whole day selling their fruits or their crafts? How do these fruits stay so juicy and how come they don’t become trash in a few hours?
Is all of it just a power of habit? This is the life they are accustomed and they don’t complain because they can’t just leave this life behind with a plane ticket?
Are we that entitled that we can’t really accept hard conditions?
How does this nature look so good with so much dryness? Plants are green, full of flowers, palm trees stand tall in this red earth.
Exactly this nature part can make you love Morocco. And the nature of the people that are somehow brave enough to work in agriculture in so much heat is something you can look up to. All these forces combined, nature and the people equal the fruits you might not find anywhere else. You must love all the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that have a taste. Few places on this earth still have organic products so easy to find, so cheap. Mass production, supersizing, chemicals, and ripping products before they get ripe aren’t here well-known actions. Maybe there are places that are slaves of the economy, and by having so much, it’s normal to export it. But still, you gotta love the fact that you bump into fresh sweet stuff everywhere and you can live on a fruit diet and fight the heat with it 🙂
Next time you complain that it’s too hot, or too messy, think about the power of habit, and that it’s a matter of time until you can reeducate your system to perceive everything differently. If you travel, this amount of time might decrease faster.
Every trip I make equals a book or two that I manage to read. The airports, airplanes, buses, cars, or the days on the beach are the most perfect spots for me to immerse in a book. I seem to always pick up the best book for each trip, or at least reading it, makes ma relate to different situations I experience.