AndFarAway

A Blog from Amman, Jordan, Online Since 2004.

One.

I was probably 11. I was sitting on the window seat in a bus, and the bus was travelling alongside barbed wire.

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Look, mom points out. That’s Lebanon.

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We were in Palestine for the week visiting my grandmother. My aunt rented a bus and took us to see our heritage.

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Lebanon. I had never been to Lebanon, and although I was young and could have skipped my way to Lebanon, I knew that there was no Lebanon for me that day. There was barbed wire.
A lot of barbed wire.

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The bus kept moving. Lebanon moved along. We reached Ras Il Naqura, which was then occupied by Israel. We rode the cable cars. We looked around the caves. We sat on a cliff and talked, laughed, and ate the sandwiches my grandmother packed for us.

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That was the last time I visited Palestine. My grandmother passed away that year, and the second intifada broke out a few years later.
I was young and I do not remember much. I remember that the sea was beautiful. I remember that I fell in love with the old town in Nablus, now ravaged. I remember that I thought that Akka was the most gorgeous town in the entire world.

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Ironically, my grandmother is actually Lebanese.

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Ras il Naqura was the closest I ever got to Lebanon until I visited Lebanon this April, 10 years later.

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My aunt lives in a village in the south of Lebanon. Her husband is a Lebanese from the south. I regret that I lost her daughters‘ cellphone numbers. I hope they’re okay.

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Gaza.
My friend Nisreen is from Gaza. She studies at the American University in Beirut now. I sent her a message asking if she’s ok- her reply:
“No. There are gunships near the dorms and I freak out every time they fire. There’s hardly anyone left in Beirut. I’m going crazy. I can’t leave because the roads aren’t safe. They bombed the road to Syria and there’s a chance they might hit the other road. If things get worse then I’ll probably go to Saudi.”

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So why now and not last week?
It’s all related. If not in facts, at least in feelings.

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2 Comments

  1. Allah y3een your friend.. and god.. this is misery

  2. It is very sad to see the lands of ancient Phoenicians being destroyed by rockets and bombs.

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