He laughed with his mother one more time before leaving to meet with friends not knowing that it was the last time he will laugh with her. The next time he saw her she was laying down, her eyes closed, surrounded by loved ones crying over her dead body.
Where were you when your mother died?
Do you remember the last conversation you had with her and what it was about?
He answered my questions as we set across from each other. He told me about his happy memories, but mostly about his worse memories. He told me about the times he cried, the times he went to sleep empathy stomach and the times he spent months not showering. As this man shared his life with me I couldn’t help but feel guilty; for asking these questions and even worse for asking follow up questions to his answers. He had trusted me with his story for some reason that I still don’t understand. As we set there and I asked him question after question I realized that I knew this guy more than I know people that have been in my life for years.
In Journalism school you get prepared for all type of things. I learned to interview people; in the process I’ve gotten really good and comfortable at filling the silence with more silence. When Interviewing someone if they’re silent after a question or don’t fully answer you question, you let them be silent while you look at them. Eventually they’re gonna answer your question with details, and hopefully you’ll get the “quote.” In journalism school you don’t learn how to deal with the guilt of the aftermath. The guilt you feel when you bring back hard memories to someone and then you leave them with their memories and you go back to your life. After 3 years in journalism school, I’m just now learning to deal with the guilt. And yet this hasn’t been though to me in a classroom, I’m learning in the field.
We’ve started the big ISPJ. Its a 5 week period where we go on our own—in my case with a partner— to put a story together, that will be presented in different mediums. During this time my partner and I are living in Casablanca. The city is as beautiful as it is in the movie. I spend most of my time in the apartment, writing, writing, writing, working on photos and some more writing. Not to worry I do take some breaks in between. For my breaks I watch Full House, like Joey would say, “Cut it out.”
The hardest part about this whole ISPJ for me as been that the clock is ticking and I’m soon going to leave Morocco. I can’t believe it’s been 2 months and a half already. It feels like just yesterday I was getting on the plane in Paris with a bunch of strangers whom I now know by name and major. Then of course there is Evan whom I know by name, major and other things I wish I didn’t know—I’m dead meat.
For the next two weeks I’m going to have a lot of work, nevertheless I’m going to try and visit Casablanca and another Moroccan City that I’ve yet visited. Next time I write I hope to have very cool Pictures to show you all.