We arrived at Qalandiya and as in regular days there were many people waiting in order to reach their place of work. Along the wall there were sleeping people who had arrived early out of fear that there might be a delay at the checkpoint and they could miss their transportation. If they have to reach Ashdod or Rehovot, there is no other way to get there.
Both the people near the wall who had already come out of the checkpoint and those who were still at the CP told us that the day before and in the days before it took a long time to come out of the checkpoint. If we are told that they had driven to the Zeitim (Olive) CP - near Ma'ale Alumim - then we know that it must have been very difficult.
Often one has to spend a lot of money to drive to another CP when the Qalandiya one is too crowded.
It is sad to report that it was alright when we were there. We were asked:"how long will we have to pass at the checkpoints under these difficult circumstances?"
While we were there a few hundred people passed and we too passed quickly .
The Shuafat refugee camp is a very difficult place.There is a problem of neglect crime and drugs and the man from the council who talked with us told us about a few appeals to the High Court of Justice in an attempt to deal with these grave problems. We saw the difficulties in managing a primary school near the wall.
The art teacher with the school children began a project of painting on the wall opposite the school.
It was sad to see the paintings of trees and a dove in an attempt to soften the horrible sight of the school's surroundings.
And so in the health clinics - there are some who try to help the camp's inhabitants in such a violent, difficult and humiliating world.