Yesterday was a reality check day for all of us- the temporary campers in the Ex Refugee Camp in Latakia, Syria.
After receiving news of the approval, and getting confirmation of the date and time of sailing, we started to pack our things.
And while I do that in my little castle, I started to feel sad....
Haaa, Zabrina... before you start jumping up and down thinking I don't want to leave Latakia go to Gaza and come back home.... relax... ok.... let me explain....
It is not that I am not excited to start sailing to Gaza.... believe me... I would have swim my way to El Arish if they let me...
But the fact that we have been staying here for about maybe 12 days has made this camp a place of memories for me..... both happy and sad....
Happy sebab because of the long period, I get to know the activists closer... get to know them deeper.... share activities... share knowledge.... share experience.... share notes... share food...hehe....
Ok, ok... i will be serious....
Not only the activists, we also get to know the amazingly happy Palestinians although they are oppressed and live in hardship... no anti-depressant pill used, ok....
You know, Zab... they have been great host to us, made us feel really at home, invited us to their weddings, asked us to come over for makan-makan their delicious home made food etc etc etc....
Aiyo... why am I always remembering food nie?
But my sad memories pulak... because here in Latakia... I begin to understand the harsh conditions the Palestinian refugees have to live with...
Jem and Azian, remember the pictures of wires hanging around the houses you guys showed me and Zab after your trip back from the Summer Camp in Lebanon?
I think the situation is the same over here....
Their homes have no proper wiring installed... no proper sewage system... no one will come and collect your rubbish and litter....
And I feel very sad because so many times whenever I meet the Palestinians ladies, some will ask if they can come with us to Gaza....
'Our home, sister Azura...' this is what they said to me...
Can you imagine.... first they force you out from your hometown and country, destroy your houses and take your land.....
Then they put your somewhere in a refugee camp....
Still not enough.... right?
Generations later, you are still not allowed or forbidden to return to where your home town or kampung is.... but, other people who are totally not related can go there??
How is that fair?
How is that just?
How is that ..... ?
Ishhh... if I think about it, this blog post will not turn out the way I plan....
As I look around me... trying to remember and memorize every inch of the area of the camp... i know now I will miss this place...
And for memories, here are the many photos taken by different activists documenting our lives in Latakia, Syria... thank you guys for sharing this photos....
Goodbye Latakia.... Thank you for being good and kind to us....
(posted by Sis Zabrina for Azura who instead of packing her things, is now staring sadly into empty space)
|The ex refugee camp where VP 5 Land Convoy activists stayed|
|Our garden facing the row of our 'apartment'|
|This is where we stayed|
|Work + Pleasure for Viva Palestina Malaysia team - Azra, myself, Faizal and Dr Musa|
|Our dining hall|
|Close up of our apartments|
|Pray anywhere on Allah's earth|
|Malaysian Embassy in the camp!|
|Entrance to my little castle|
|'Landed area' of my little castle|
|Bed cum Cupboard cum Dressing Table cum Surau cum Hangers cum Drawers cum .....|
|Some prefers the tents|
|'Housing' areas of some activists|
|Azra's working hard in the morning to make coffee|
|Can I have some?|
|Sometimes we visit one another's 'home'|
|Malaysian's fav past time - snacking!|
|This is not my 3 in 1 coffee!|
|Whatever la.. beggers cant be choosers....|
|Can I have some?|
|Good examples of how we should sit and eat!|
|Azra and Dr Musa's sugar fix!|
|Follow the leader....|
|Who is actually working here? Only Faizal??|
|Always having to make coffee for others...|
|Food cooked by men!|
|Malaysian 'Open House' camp style!|
|Come and try Malaysian food... yum..yum...|
|Nice or not, brother?|
|We wash our clothes, ok....|
|Invasion of private bungalows|
|Newly 'constructed' bungalow units|
|This is how birds see us!|
|Do you know what flags are these?|
|Aqsa Syarif's kitchen!|
|Do not disturb....|
|Another one of Malaysian Embassy|
|Faizal wanting to see how the birds see us....|
|No theft... no chains needed...|
|I drew that!|
|Taking a break...|
|We are with you, Palestine....|