22 Years

by Jemmina

(and one week)

Last Wednesday I celebrated my 22nd birthday, after being spoiled at the office with pizza, cake and cards I spent the evening in the desert with some friends. The desert was beautiful, we had a BBQ, sat around the fire, drank wine and looked for shooting stars. There is definitely something serene and beautiful about the desert. It was a great way to spend my birthday.

Birthday Bon Fire

As I catch the bus at rush hour everyday, I get to have some pretty interesting experiences. Like talking to someone on the bus about his daughter who lives in Sydney, or over packed buses with people almost sitting on each other.
On Thursday, as the bus stopped at a junction, a woman started yelling at a group of men. She was just upset that they were pushing her, but the toothless old woman in traditional dress sitting in front of her didn’t see it this way. She turned around, and took it upon herself to yell at the first women for yelling(because that makes sense). This turned into a bit of a competition to see who could yell at the other louder. As things escalated, others on the bus tried to get involved to tell them to calm down and stop. This only made the toothless old woman angrier and she started yelling at them. As I’m watching this I’m trying really hard not to laugh at the sit-com-esque scene playing out in front of me. My composure crumbled when the elderly Muslim man next to me started chuckling loudly and tryed to get me to join in. By this point the original woman had shut up and was sitting quietly, so the toothless old woman decided to yell at everyone on the bus. She stood up, took her walking stick and started waving it around in the air, occasionally banging it down on the floor of the bus. By this point the bus driver was having trouble focusing on the road because he was laughing so hard. Even the first woman getting off the bus didn’t deter her, and she kept going until we reached the bus station. Who needs t.v’s these days when you have toothless old women?

Sunday I went to church with some friends, and joined them for lunch, chicken stuffed with rice. So good.
In the evening I hung out with my ‘second family’ and we went bowling. The bowling alley is new in Bethlehem and quite a novelty! Adam(3) is now talking SO much that its hard to get a word in edgewise. He speaks Arabic so well, and I find myself a little jealous. Haha. He also talks just for the sake of talking, at one point he called out, ‘Baba! Ta-al hon hunak!’, ‘Daddy! Come here there!’ haha.

Monday I stuffed envelopes all day at the office, came home and decided to cook some lentils, but needed chili powder. So I ran up to get some from the store, only to find that they only had Paprika. So I decided to make chili con Carne, and needed mince. So I went next door to the butchers, with all the carcasses hanging from the roof and sawdust on the floor. Once I order my mince they offer me a small cup of strong coffee and simply hack a piece off  one of the hanging carcasses and mince it up for me.  I leave happy and caffeinated. Coffee cup
Me and my freshly minced meat

I love living behind a vege store, 2 convience stores and a butcher.
Dinner was delicious. Afterwards I went out with my flatmate and friend for a drink as we sat around a bon fire, wrapped in sleeping bags. Its getting cold!