Women in Bastan Village, Kurdistan

Saturday, April 30, 2011

10 Things I Will Never Forget About my Journey...Israel/Palestine/Iraq

This is a reflection on what I 've lived and witnessed for the past 10 months while living in Israel/Palestine and Iraqi-Kurdistan. I thought of putting this list of the things that had impacted me the most on my journey. If you have been following my posts you may be familiar with the details' if not, you can always refer back to previous posts. This list is in no way extensive, rather is just something I was reflecting on the other night before going to sleep. I would need many sheets of paper or many web pages to list all the people and events that have touched me on this journey but here goes a small preview....

1. Living and working at the Tent of Nations, a Palestinian Farm surrounded by all sides by Israeli settlements. Watering the plants, trying to keep the farm despite the daily challenges of the occupation. Working at the summer camp with 60 Palestinian kids was no easy task but will stay in my heart FOREVER. (July 2010)

2. Staying at Al-Arakib village on the desert in Beer Sheeva, Israel after the first village demolition. (July 31st. 2010)

3. The amazing women of Kayan in Haifa, Israel who work with their hearts to empower women in the northern part of Israel. (Sept-Nov. 2010)

4. The pharmacist in Nablus, West Bank, who introduced his sons to us, one next to him, the other one who spend fifteen (15) years in jail for throwing stones when he was 11 and the third one on a picture on the wall, he was killed in the 2000 Intifada by the Israelis. (Oct. 30th, 2010)
5. Being tear-gassed by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) in the village of Beit Ommar, West Bank on a peaceful demonstration over the illegal settlement of Beit Ayn. (Nov. 22nd 2010)

6.Watching the children selling gum in the streets in Erbil, Iraqi-Kurdistan. (Several times, Jan-April 2011)

7. Watching one widow woman in Khabat village 30 km from Erbil, crying because of the poor living conditions she and her children were living and the helplessness of not being able to provide better for her family. (Jan 11th, 2011)

8. Being the only women in the citadel, sitting and sipping my coffee, later I learned it was a men-only area. (Jan 14 th, 2011)

9. Being almost killed in the mountains of the Iraqi-Kurdistan, when our car slipped on a cliff on Massif mountain in the outskirts of Erbil. (Feb. 4th, 2011)

10.Being yelled at by the Sami Abdelrahman Park in Erbil,Iraqi-Kurdistan because we were lying on the grass and then a second time because we were dancing! I yelled back at him in Arabic telling him to bother the two guys next to us who were also lying on the grass. (April 1st, 2011)
Please, if you have been following my journey, or have been part of it in one way or the other, let me know your thoughts by email or by posting a comment into the blog comments section. I'd really like to hear how it has changed your or your community's perspective, life or way you perceived this part of the world. I would like to include these comments on o book project that I am working on. Also please feel free to share with friends, family, at work, or just to open a life changing possibility reaching someone with totally opposite views...

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Individually and collectively, we can raise the consciousness of the people of this planet, so that each of us will be viewed as members of the same family,who are here to claim their birthright of unconditional love and...[ ]. If we don't do it; who will. From the song Sisterlove The Hypnotist, Cafe del Mar Vol. 1.


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