We visit Beit Aribiya, the home and peace center of a family whose home was demolished four times, rebuilt five times. Because of the trauma, his wife no longer speaks. His child temporarily lost sight. Their spirit was struck again and again. His resistance is strong, but it is heartbreaking and traumatizing for him and his family. Demolishing. Traumatizing. Robbing. Damaging mind, body, and spirit. This is not the way a human being should treat another human being.
Later in the evening, as I walk home, I pass the house where I rescued the crying little girl a week ago. The grandmother and mother are there cooking hubez (bread) on the outdoor woodfire oven. I say hello, and they beckon to me and answer, “Hubbez! Tfaddal.” Bread! Please.” They offer me some of the hubez. I accept it, shake hands, and try to make conversation in the best Arabic I can muster. I say my name and “beit” (home). I meet a little boy and shake his hand. The family was so warm! I thank them and say, “cheroffna” (my pleasure), and head back, eating the best bread I have ever tasted.
I hold the generosity of this rejected family in my hands, and I could almost cry. Their smiles are maybe what make this bread so good. It was by far the best and warmest welcome I have received yet. I do not know if they can afford what they gave to me. It stirs up my heart. I will never forget their smiles, the broken attempt at communication, and the warm bread in my mouth as I savor their generosity and welcome.