salaam! smiti Ryan, ana mirikani



My name is Ryan, and I will be serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in rural Morocco beginning this March!

I am currently learning the Arabic alphabet (have learned 19 letters so far fairly well) and am trying to learn some Darija phrases before I head to Morocco. Depending on where the Peace Corps places me, I might actually be learning Tashelheit or Tamazight, but learning Darija will still be a priority of mine.

I have a blog that I hope to be updating while in Morocco -
Please subscribe by email on the blog page ( if you’d like to hear the thoughts of an American on the absolutely stunning, historically rich, and adventurous country that is Morocco!

Why I’m Joining the Peace Corps:

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good luck. please recognize that wherever you end up, you are not a community leader, you are a foreign implantation into the community, and your job (other than FIRST DO NO HARM) is to facilitate the needs and goals of the community you are placed in as a representative of your country spreading goodwill peace or whatever you want to call it. no matter what there is no way for you, after 1 month or 6 months or 2 years, to have the same understanding of the community as those who have lived there for generations, so please always remember this and stay humble and do not assume you know what is best for them. go as slow as you can and listen to people and try to understand where they are coming from. be honest and open and share what you are doing with everyone. the time to be argumentative, pushy and ruthless is when advocating for your communities plans to your supervisors in the Peace Corps.

Thanks, I promise I’m not an arrogant prick - if anything, I’m quite self-deprecating.

I’m rather enjoying learning the Arabic alphabet and find writing it almost therapeutic. As an engineering student (I studied electrical engineering in college), I appreciate the very mathematical/logical aspect to the language.

Right now, I’m trying to learn how to roll my R, like in an alveolar trill (used in Spanish, Italian…and Arabic!):

this is a very good place to start your darija education

there are also a good amount of exercises, videos etc throughout the forum tabs as you search