The Teach

Friday prayers have finished and a lot of Palestinian flags and Keffiyehs can be seen in the streets. It’s the traditional time for clashes between Palestinians and Israelis, which means some parts of Hebron are better avoided.

The area around my accommodation is calm as always and people are hanging out in the streets. From what I’ve been told, it’s not much different in areas with clashes, though. Tear gas and rocks have become so prevalent, that people just don’t bother any more. Women continue their shopping, men remain sitting to drink their coffee, all that while youths and soldiers run through the streets. But again, that’s only from what I’ve been told, haven’t witnessed any of that myself.

Yesterday I had my first class and it was sub-par, to say the least. They put me in a room full of kids who hardly understood any English – total beginners. As I don’t speak any Arabic, chances of teaching them anything were rather slim, and after a rather frustrating hour, I had them play word games. Bit of a WTF, really.

The whole organisational circumstances are rather disappointing and reality is pretty far from the description I got in advance. After the last couple of weeks I’m in a general mood of not giving a fuck about anything and in regards to the volunteering position, it’s a coin-flip between whether I’ll stay or leave. And that’s not taking into account any of the current political situation.

Despite all that sounding rather negative, I don’t want to forget the amazing hospitality that random people on the streets have shown. This morning I headed out with another volunteer and on the way to the falafel shop, we were already treated to a coffee over a quick chat. After brunch we sat down for a coffee and were given plates of sweets to go along with it. One of the locals sat down with us for a chat and when we wanted to pay, staff refused to take a single shekel.

In general locals have been really keen on chatting and finding out where we’re from and what we’re up to. Germans are extremely well received here, the reason for which is twofold. Germany is allowing many Palestinians to either work or study in the country, which leaves a very good impression with the younger ones. Secondly, killing millions of Jews is something many Palestinians see favourably – the failure to distinguish between Jews and Zionists is something they share with most of the world’s population.

About an hour ago an Israeli soldier was stabbed in the city and the assailant – as per usual – executed point-blank on the spot. Guess I’ll be staying indoors for a while longer today.

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