Friday, July 13, 2007

ال حى في فلسطين (life in Palestine)

Hello Again!

Life has been rather droll since my last post and droll seems to be more difficult. When the novelty of hanging out with people wears off you realize that there is not a whole lot else to do around here. Maybe I'm starting to see what it's like for people who live here and aren't just on a nice little summer vacation. And I even have things to do like volunteering and Arabic classes. Lots of the youth (and jobless adults, of whom there are many, many) here in the camp have literally nothing to do. I think its this boredom and listness that drives many people crazy.

This last week I once again hit a wall, one could say, and had a taste of some depression: lack of motivation, being really tired, discouraged, etc. I have also realized how alone I am here in many ways. I have realized that, if I was to do a similar program again, I wouldn't do it without going with other Christians whom I knew. (The prospect for a wife, for the next time around, seems very appealing at the moment :). Living alone with a muslim family and doing a program not specifically Christian in nature has had its toll on me spiritually. One thing that has been difficult is that many of the big excursions and trips we go on are on Sundays, so if I go I have had to miss church. I have decided to not go on any more trips, so I should be able to go to church from now on.

My efforts to make contacts with Israeli-Jews, has thus far been ineffective. This is something I want to focus on in my remaining month here. I feel that to be effective in creating change here (and in simply undertanding the issues) on needs to hear and experience both sides of the wall, as it were.

Some random things I have experienced/seen this last week: the city of Qalqiya (a city almost completely surrounded by the wall), a grape-leaves lunch at a friends house in the camp, hearing the story of somone who slept away from home fore 3 months out of fear of being arrested, the actual arrest of a different man protesting the building of the wall, an hour or so conversation with a new friend, almost completely in Arabic (!).

On a seperate note, I would love to tell people in the US the real story of the situation here. If any of you have contacts in newspapers or other media who would be interested(or know of similar opportunities to share my stories once returning) please let me know.

(see some more pictures on my pic page- see link on the right)

Thanks for your thoughts and prayers! Keep them coming!


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