Abu Dis, Ras Abu Sbitan (Olive Terminal), Sheikh Saed, Mon 18.8.08, Morning

Netta E., Rina R., Hanna B. (reporting) and Yoav H. (visitor)

Sheikh Saed
Empty checkpoint -- the school year has not yet started.  A garbage truck appeared, and even collected some garbage.  But who can overcome the mounds of garbage which the Jerusalem municipality fails to remove, even though the local residents pay municipal taxes as required?
Abu Dis
A ghost town.  The road along the Wall is empty.  No one at Baba -- we saw only a few cats feasting on the garbage which is not being collected.  Hard not to recall the living neighbourhood of yore -- we would never have imagined it would end like this.  Our visitor, more optimistic than us, promises that walls come down, and we wonder whether this will take place in our lifetime.
Ras Abu Sabitan
We crossed the checkpoint to the Palestinian side without difficulty. We were almost the only "visitors".  Persons leaving the checkpoint on their way to work in Jerusalem were busy "dressing" after the search, a wrenching spectacle even for accustomed eyes like ours.  On our departure the policeman in charge appeared and began a conversation with our visitor -- a discourse of the deaf of course. He told us "we are a special people and therefore hated by all."  We tried to explain that it was precisely because we imagine ourselves so special we draw ciriticism.  But failed the message did not get through.
Overcome by heat, we left.
Kadar Ezariya Intersection

A checkpoint in the direction of Ezariya.  We assumed that the border police had received an order to set up the checkpoint. But due to their geographical ignorance they had set it up in the opposite direction!