Monday 6 March 2017

My Month In Abu Dis: Goodbye Palestine

My month in Abu Dis is over. I am now back in the UK and it has been a difficult couple of days in leaving Abu Dis, and Palestine behind. This is firstly due to saying goodbye to several people and places that have created great memories for me. As well as this, there is a certain small guilt attached to returning to the UK. This is not guilt in the sense of doing something bad, but a slight guilt in being very fortunate to live in a political situation that enables the citizens of my country to have freedom, and live a life absent from lingering periodical human rights violations. It is a strange thought to think that right now, in many places, Palestinian life for many lacks so much of the civil liberty that we take for granted here in the UK. Simple things that I have done since returning home, such as going to university and visiting family in another part of the country would be difficult or even impossible for many in Palestine due to the occupation, and the way it has some degree of restricting influence over every part of life.  However, apart from these feelings, I was very pleased with the entirety of the trip, and I would even categorise some less than pleasant experiences as useful learning curves for future travel  in that area of the world. I set out objectives for myself before departing for Palestine and I believe to have accomplished them; writing about the occupation from a human perspective, seeing the real impact of western foreign policy, as well as teaching English, improving my Arabic and visiting some important and interesting places. I would like to thank everybody whom I was involved with, and to anybody wishing to visit, say to you that will be in for an interesting and in some cases, absolutely wonderful time. Just try not to eat falafel everyday.

Taken near Abu Dis on one of the sunnier February days; I will certainly be going to Palestine again in the future.