December 14, 2007

Aswan



Today was our 6th day at Peace Camp. Wake up call was at 6:30 this morning, very early according to most of us… but some determined Peace Campers made it up even earlier: the magic of being on this amazing cruise boat on the Nile and watching the sunrise, is a sight you don’t want to miss! When the rest of us got up we had a lovely breakfast and at eight we began our only session of the day: Peace & conflict. As usual we divided into five different groups and our discussing began. It was a hot topic, and we realized that even within these very small groups it’s difficult to agree and compromise all the time. I believe that all people are made different and are meant to be so, but that it doesn’t mean we can’t make our planet a peaceful place. Afterwards we divided into two bigger groups and visited two schools in Aswan. The children at the schools don’t often get to experience visits like this and they were so excited! The priceless sight of the smiles on their faces made us excited as well – and that’s being mild! The school had a library, several computer labs, classrooms and a special room for art and crafts. Some of us bought the things that they had made and I’m sure even that little something made a huge impact on those who had made them. Before we left the schools we enjoyed an invigorating dance and song by the children of the school, one which we eventually joined in on. The feeling of being there – in the middle of a room with such different people, dancing, singing, smiling people, from all over the world, made me realize that spite all those differences we are supposed to have, we have so much in common we should cherish.

After that experience-of-a-lifetime trip to the schools of Aswan we had lunch back at the boat again. Today the theme was American BBQ and it was appreciated by most of us. Fries, chicken, meat – and ketchup! We soon realized after lunch that this was our last day on the A&K boat. To make the best of the last hours here most of us spent our free time on the sun deck. Swimming, sunbathing, conversing, and all those things we love to do – wherever and whenever we are. After our free time on the deck we joined together in the lounge to take part of speaker Mrs. Dalia Khalil’s lecture about iEARN Egypt. She spoke of many things, amongst these, the education system in Egypt and the world, the percent of children living in poverty, and the number of illiterate youths of the world. It was serious, but well-needed information. At the end of the lecture, many of us were interested in joining the organization and involving their own countries and cities. iEARN is meant to enable youth to make a different – a positive difference, sometimes small, but a difference just the same. 120 countries are involved in the iEARN activities since it was founded in 1988 and everyday more people are interested. At the end of the lecture many of us were interested in joining the organization and involving our own countries and cities.
Well, take care – wherever you are.
PEACE

- Annika, Sweden




Right after the great lecture by Dalia Khalil, we were greeted by two sail boats that were to transport us to the Nubian society which is located on an island right off the coast of Aswan. We had a great time bargaining at a traditional Nubian market, we also noticed that the language that these Nubians were speaking was not the traditional Arabic heard in local Egyptians markets. Later on we came back to the ship and enjoyed a sit down dinner on the ship, with an extravagant dessert of three ice cakes shaped as pyramids. Today, was a sad day for me because we are going to be leaving our little piece of heaven, our sanctuary, our home away from home, the "Nile Adventure" cruse ship. To conclude the night we began to travel to the sound and light show at Philae, and many of us learned about ancient Egyptian mythology, which many of us didn’t know existed, the show was remarkable I have never seen such coordination and effort put into shows such as this one. One amazing thing that happened on, was when Barb came up to a few of us and began to cry, we all became really emotional and were haunted by the thought that in a few days we would be in different parts of the world, away from each other. What amazed me most about the people attending this program, is that we all became really good friends really fast, according to a lot of the delegation leaders, our group was the fastest group to get to know each other in such a short time. Again I can’t believe that in just a few days I will be back home away from my friends that I feel that I have known for years.

Kareem – Palestine

1 comment:

Debi said...

The beauty of a trip like this is that you do make so many friends. Email will be such an easy way to keep in touch. I'm impressed by the maturity and sensitivity in all the blog entries. You are all young adults who make us parents proud. The future of the world is in good hands.