10 September 2006

must be strangely exciting to watch the stoic squirm.

In Arabic recently, I discovered that I was unable to say that I sold my ticket to the football game, but had no trouble discussing Iranian President Ahmadinejad's challenging Bush to a foreign policy debate, as well as the generally sorry state of US-Iranian relations, Iran's nuclear program, and the United Nations' (and the American veto's) role in said program. I know I'm studying this language in hopes of a career in diplomacy, but seriously, this seems a bit absurd.

While indulging my recent fixation with the BBC, I stumbled across this interesting, but disturbing, article on the border "tourism" that has developed in Israel as curious citizens come to visit the site of the recent war. Perhaps a bit morbid, but I can accept the curiosity. What's heartbreaking are the interviews with the citizens of the area and their conceptions of themselves and those on the other side. I've asked who are we to abandon hope for peace just because it will take hard work, but this makes me wonder if I really am as naive as I've been told. I hope not.

Secret of the Week:

Slowly but surely. You don't know it, but thank you.

06 September 2006

life is easier when it's just a blur.

My burning desire to play the cello is topped only by my secret dream to be some brilliant, dark-haired, successful man's trophy wife. Shhh, don't tell anyone - it doesn't really befit my "liberated woman" image.

Speaking of liberated women, the BBC is conducting an online panel Q & A with residents of Haifa (to follow a similar event with Lebanese citizens last week) where readers worldwide can ask questions about living through the war. "Hmm, that's interesting," I thought. "I wonder what sort of people they'll be interviewing." Scrolling down the bios, I was feeling pretty satisfied with the variety - men, women, Arabs and Jews, etc. Then I got to the last woman, Liz Halevy-Berger, who works as a counselor at a rape crisis center in Haifa. The same Rape Crisis Center in the basement of the Haifa Feminist Center, whose ground floor houses Isha L'Isha's offices. I sat in meetings with this woman. I probably met her unnamed colleague whose apartment was hit by a rocket. I don't even know what to think anymore, except that something has to change, and soon.

While I'm still preserving that illusion of liberation, it seems global warming is now taking aim at a treasured European pastime - the summer holiday. Is nothing sacred? And you laugh at my idealistic attempts to save the planet...if not for the trees, then at least for your beach vacation!