Hello all! My name is Kadie Ray and I’m currently a junior enrolled at Madison. I say ‘enrolled at’ versus ‘a student at’ because it has been quite some time since I’ve seen our lovely campus back home. Tell me, how is Bascom Hill these days? No, I haven’t dropped out of school to become a ski-bum for the fall semester, although that has long been an idle dream of mine, if the whole college education thing doesn’t work out (kidding, sort of). But I HAVE been studying abroad! I’ve been in Haifa, Israel since August. I’ve been loving every single SECOND of my time here, and I’ve gotten to travel, meet new people, and further my language skills. So, all in all, fall semester has been a fairly successful one so far, but now, I have the spring semester of my DREAMS to look forward to! Only a few weeks after finishing up my semester here in Israel, I’ll be heading across the Mediterranean to FEZ, MOROCCO!! I could not be more excited or anxious for spring semester to arrive
I’ve never been to Morocco before, so mixed in with all the excitement that comes from taking a semester abroad is my anticipation of being in a completely new place. I’ve been studying Arabic for the last three years, and I’m excited to learn more of the formal language, as well as some more about the Moroccan spoken dialect. But, I’m nervous as well-what if I can’t understand a WORD of what my host family says? Speaking of my host family, I can’t WAIT to meet them! I lived with a family for a few months in Jordan when I studied there in 2008, and I’ve got to say that it is by far my favorite way to experience a new culture and a new country. A family can teach you things and give you experiences you could never find elsewhere, and I am so excited about the possibilities living with a Moroccan family for the semester will bring.
I’m also a little bit nervous about the changes that will come in my life from moving from a Jewish, Hebrew-speaking country to a predominately Muslim, Arabic-speaking country. How’s THAT for a different kind of culture shock? But I promise to share all my findings, thoughts, emotions, pictures and observations along the way. Thanks for joining me-get ready, get set, GO!