Water in Africa
- Africa, Morocco
by Ryan Powell, Ait Yaddou, Morocco
When heavy rains occur, the dry riverbed suddenly swells with water. The kids dart back and forth and go running up to the edge of the river as it flows by. People usually go sit on a high hill and actually watch the river come. They do this to see if the river will spill into their fields and damage crops. It is quite a sight to actually see the river come.
by Jennifer Bohman, Souss Massa National Park, Morocco
Everybody loves the beach. In the summertime, people from the mountains come down to my village to visit relatives and cool off. There are cliffs with natural caves that people have turned into summer homes, where they camp. August is vacation season, and the village fills up. There is a definite festive feel.
We even go swimming sometimes. Morocco is a Muslim country, and as traditional Muslim women, all my village friends always wear headscarves, long skirts, long-sleeved shirts, and even another flowing wrap on top of that. In an ill-fated effort to blend in (my blond hair and blue eyes and stuttering Arabic often give me away), I always wear long skirts and baggy T-shirts and my hair pulled back. So, when my friends told me we were going swimming, I had no idea what to wear. I had a swimsuit, but I thought all that bare skin might not be quite fitting in such a conservative area. So, I put on my swimsuit under my clothes and decided I would just follow everybody else's lead. When we got down to the beach, all my friends pulled off their top layer of clothes, having a full layer on underneath, and plunged into the ocean. I stood for a moment in contemplation and figured, as they say, when in Rome, do as the Romans do, and I plunged into the ocean fully clothed. I left a lot of stuff at home in the U.S.; one of them seems to be the need to wear a bathing suit while swimming.
by Erin Olson, Agadir L'henna, Morocco
Some of the little boys like to splash each other with irrigation water, but generally, wasting water is not tolerated. However, on Aushora, kids are allowed to throw water on one another. The boys in my village like to test their skills by jumping across the large irrigation ditch.
by Jessica Seem, Zaouia Village, Morocco
I've seen only one place where kids play with water—where a dry riverbed cuts through the village. There is a small concrete bridge over it, and water sometimes collects in a deep spot next to the bridge. Kids will play with the water by pouring it around, between jugs or old cans.