but the main thing tonight is i miss palestine. more specifically, i miss our friends. i miss the community we had there. it really was something else.
sure, there were the times when there were parties on our patio till 3 a.m. the summer after hiba was born and all i wanted to do was sleep instead of listen to people laughing and talking right outside my window. and there were the times when everyone would come over till the wee hours of the morning and make my kitchen dirty and leave their dishes for me to wash and then never take them back to their own house. or the times when andrew would steal my coffee mugs.
but there were also the times when we would play catan for hours on end. or the times we would watch movies with funny subtitles and bad quality. or the times when we'd have sushi parties or saleem would make hotwings. and the times when we would bbq on the deck and sit around and eat and drink for hours, talking about everything and nothing.
there was the time when rachel dropped everything she was doing to distract me from the fact that my husband was detained by the israeli army. she made some phone calls with me and then came over to my house and we taught hiba how to clap.
there was the christmas when we were all so homesick that we had a million different parties and dinners and breakfasts and gift exchanges and acted as fill-in families for each other.
there was hiba's first birthday party, which was filled with some of her best friends in the world - all people who were at least twenty years older than her, but loved her like family.
there was the time when hiba was born and munther snuck food into the hospital for me, tons of people brought us dinner and showered us with gifts.
there was the time when matthias was born and rachel and audra took care of hiba, and again friends brought us food and helped us out.
tonight, jason had to take matthias to the hospital. turns out he has croup. he's fine now - that's not the point of this post. the point is that it was 11 at night and i didn't know who to call. we do have friends here that i would call and take hiba to if i really needed to. but we don't have the sense of community that we had in palestine, where if i called one of our friends, they would drop what they were doing and come to our house, no matter what time. and we all lived so close that it would be a matter of minutes.
i know we have good friends here and i know that friendships take time. i'm thankful for the friends we have.
but tonight, i miss palestine. i miss the culture of closeness that was forced on us, that we had to adapt to, that we were made to live with whether we liked it or not. and by the end, i liked it. and i miss it.