Wednesday, February 1

[grandpa comes to palestine!]

Folks, I have an announcement to make. In spite of the rainy weather, the 11 hour flight, the horrendous security checks and the multi-transfer journey from Tel Aviv to the West Bank, my grandfather is coming to Palestine tomorrow.

He is well-read, well-traveled and incredibly enthusiastic about this trip. He's wanted to visit this region of the world for quite some time, and now that his granddaughter (me) is living and working here, the timing is right!

My to-do list for his visit:

  • Jerusalem/Al-Quds: Old City, all the associated churches, mosques, Wailing Wall, museums, delicious dinner out
  • Bil'in: Friday weekly non-violent protest
  • Bethlehem: Church of the Nativity, Dheisheh camp, cultural centers, the Wall and Banksy graffiti, visit my favorite mosque (Mosque of Omar) on the main square, Palestinian Heritage Center, potential hike around Mar Elias and the orthodox monastery, Holy Land Trust?, Taybeh beer, Stars & Bucks cafe
  • Nablus: soap factories, Ali's oud workshop, dinner with Music Harvest folk, Sameh's piano workshop, tea at the Hijjawi dress shop, dinner with Haneen, Old City knafeh, An-Najah University, visit olive groves, Salem village, Balata camp, Sama Nablus, soccer game?
  • Hebron/Al-Khalil: Tomb of the Patriarchs, souq and abandoned main street, Breaking the Silence tour or Green Olive tour, Hirbawi kuffiyeh factory
  • Jenin: Freedom Theatre, dinner with friends
  • Ramallah: Arafat's grave and Muqata, nice dinner out
  • Jericho: gentle walk around the city
  • Maale Adumim? Ariel?
In other news, I'm ready to be onto the next thing. Good thing I have a few months to wander around before Japan in May.

Ahlan wa sahlan, Ba!

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