Talvike in Palestine: Holy city and humanity

Last week brought lots of new things. On Monday I met with the boy with whom we are going to study music, once a week, and also be working on stimulating fine motor skills. He has a bit of trouble with focusing – sometimes he seems to disappear in another world and it is not easy to bring him out from there. But in clear moments he speaks good English and is cool and smart. We played drums, melodica and piano. Tomorrow we´ll try to make a more serious lesson. With special needs kids it is always difficult to estimate their capacity and intellectual skills during the first meeting, and it´s easy to underestimate a kid if he has speech disorder. I have to remember this.

On Tuesday I had the first solfeggio lesson. There was only one girl present – she studies ballet and piano here. Next week there´s going to be more. We´ll start with rhythms and meter – just to get used to each other. And then we go on with melodic dictation, muhahahaa.

On Wednesday we made plans with director at Dura School about cleaning up. It should not be too difficult to organize. She promised to check with municipality where to bring the garbage collected and ask from Ministry of Culture if they can spend one school day on cleaning up. I hope she´ll contact them now, because my previous (somewhat stereotyping) experience says that probably I´ll have to remind her to do it, few times.

I also met football girls, for the first time. It turned out that they didn´t get any information about us having lessons two times a week. Allright….  let´s hope they now will know and remember. Girls were nice, teenagers.  The sad thing about meeting hem was that they sincerely believe that One Direction and Justin Bieber is best the Western music has to offer. Makes me feel like crying.

On Friday we were in Betlehem. On the way I happened to sit next to a very interesting woman. Her name was Taghrid, she is an engineer and promotes rural life. We spoke about Palestine, Israel, settlements, about religion and meditation,  Taghrid´s grandmother was sufi. Now, in her forties, she has been muslim, has joined protestant school and contemplated buddhist lifestyle, ultimately reaching sufism herself. She dreams about making her own enterprise, so local people could have work. She dreams about travelling to India, so she could make a next step in her spiritual life.  During one and a half hour of speaking together she was radiating positive attitude, the hope that the dark period will be over soon and the life will be better.

When we reached the city, I met to French persons who were both volunteering in Ramallah. We walked the old city and visited Aida refugee camp. Qute an eye-opening experience. The life there is complicated – one  3×3 m2 room for up to seven people, no privacy, and they have water for only six hours every 25 days. But somehow they have managed to keep strong and have a big family, so new generations often odn´t want to move out of the camp. It would somehow mean that they would give up on their original home. The right of return is still a strong dream of people, even though the camp was built almost 70 years ago and the situation has not improved since.

On Saturday I visited once again a local farm, where I saw how to cut olive trees.It was so cool that I already knew half of the people. It´s so nice feeling which makes me feel more home here.

Tonight we have first event at Orient that I organize. Somee people to perform, open mic, and hopefully it´s going to be cool.

The volunteer program is funded by the Estonian Foreign Ministry’s Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid funds

LOGO ENG arengukoostoo

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