Dabkeh and Darwish

An exciting day was awaiting the campers today. After meeting at the Friend’s School campus the campers had their daily warm up and headed to the Mahmoud Darwish Museum. The most influential poet in Palestine, Darwish passed in 2008.  It was important for the campers to be exposed to the Palestinian literary heritage and understand that Darwish was a voice for the Palestinian struggle. In it they paid their respects to the great poet and were shown some pieces of his work as well as possessions he left behind such as his pens, sunglasses and desk and office recreation amongst other things.
After a tour at the museum gift store the campers hoped on to the bus towards their anticipated overnight camping trip to Jibia. A nearby area 20 minutes away from Ramallah, surrounded by hills and forest where they had the opportunity to experience a bit of Palestinian nature and outdoor skills. Upon arrival the campers had a chance to relax on the compound where the owners had set up barbecuing and lounging areas under the shade.

Shortly after lunch the campers had their third community service experience as they took a 15 minute hike into the forest to help make a clearing for future campers to come. Part of the experience was to leave their mark wherever they went; and they did a wonderful job in clearing up the open space by building a stonewall with the rocks they excavated from the area and removing all the shrubs and bushes to create a harmonious camping area for the community.

After an arduous couple of hours spent working, the campers headed back to camp for a crash course on Palestinian camp cooking session while other were taught how to put up the tents they had been provided with. As a reward for their hard work the National Security Band came to surprise the campers with a surprise dabke workshop. Everyone joined in for an evening of Palestinian music and dancing around a bonfire. After a hearty meal and when the effort of the day started to set in the campers mingled around the campfire roasting marshmallows and eventually reluctantly headed to bed.