A city of beauty and destruction, humor and sadness, growth and stagnation. Where green and red lights mean maybe, and the only thing needed to cross the street is confidence. I’ll admit it, I was afraid of you at first. Fear dissipates with experience, familiarity, knowing.
Imagine you are going on holiday to Disneyland – a man-made paradise for adults and children alike. You’ve seen the pictures and are anticipating this dreamland up until the moment you arrive. You take in the exciting atmosphere, but something is off, something’s not right. Suddenly it occurs to you – Disneyland is deserted, completely empty. There aren’t people, no tourists, and the energy that you anticipated doesn’t exist. What happened here? Why is this paradise a ghost town, a shell of what it once was and has the potential to be?
Yes, I know, I stopped writing. I’ve started countless posts that I’ve abandoned halfway through. I went to Greece with the passionate intention to write about my experience, it’s just that, I’m not sure how to verbalize it, how to share it. I arrived in Leros and jumped into an exciting, emotional, overwhelming, and sad tornado that consumed me until the moment I boarded a tiny plane back to Athens. It’s taken me a few weeks of aimlessly wandering around Europe to sort it all out. Continue reading “Silence”
Barbed wire. Fences and barbed wire. A cement court surrounded by high fences and barbed wire. A policed metal gate opens up to gravel, concrete, metal containers and barbed wire. A military truck dumps crates of bread on the slab of concrete surrounded by barbed wire – breakfast. Children run around on the gravel, playing on rocks in the confined, fenced in camp. All I see is barbed wire. Surely this is a prison. No? A refugee camp you call it. Hotspot, a prison to some – Syrians, Kurds, Palestinians, Iranians, Pakistanis a refugee camp to others. Continue reading “Hotspot”
Seemingly, everyone I’ve met since landing in Athens has an opinion about the refugee crisis in Greece – locals, Uber drivers, NGO’s, police, and refugees themselves. Opinions are freely shared with me once I disclose what I’m doing here (teaching yoga in a refugee camp) and I listen, hesitating to form an opinion until I’ve had my own experience on the island of Leros, my home for the next month or so. Continue reading “POC, Refugee, Resident”