Tamxarit

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This festivity takes place in mid-October, it is the Muslim’s new year. Women prepare couscous (Senegalese way— which is brown and smaller than the Moroccan one) with white beans and dates or raising, lots of palm oil and then meat and veggies prepared in a sauce. It is very good but very heavy to the stomach. The women of the family gather all together on that afternoon to prepare the dinner. I was invited to spend the evening with the Gueye Family; my neighbors. They cooked the couscous and the sauce on the rooftop terrace of their house. We all dressed up a little nicer and gathered around the pig plates and ate all together.

After dinner, the kids usually dress up as their opposite sex and go to the streets with “tam tams” (drums) and sing “tayebol, wolé” from house to house. The neighbors or house-owners usually give some coins to the children. This time around, the streets of the Dixième were filled with smaller to bigger groups of children dressed up, singing to the beat of the drums and dancing around. It is a similar tradition than to going for “trick or treat”, or singing Christmas carols from door to door… And of course I had to join in kid’s party – smiley

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“Tayebol”, the song we sang, apparently comes from the talibis

The students of the Koran, were/are called talibis. They would eat, learn, shower, and sleep at the Master’s place for free, who would teach them the holy scriptures. In order to get lunch, they would go on the streets asking for food (or money), to collect it all together with the other students to prepare their meal. During the Tamxarit, one of the recommendations is to make offerings as part of the rituals and tradition of this celebration. So the talibis (students) would go and ask for offerings, so that they would collect on that day “enough” for them not to have to go so often to the streets begging for food for the coming months. Today, it has become a “party” were kids go to the streets and to the neighbors to collect some money and have some fun.

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