Thursday, September 11, 2008

A few months ago I was walking around, dazzled, by the beauty of the al-Hambra palace and that of the Mosque of Cordoba. We, Arabs, were walking around as normal tourists, looking at these quaint palaces, these beautiful buildings and columns. We were here as guests, walking around amongst the ruins. But these buildings had names, Arabic names that were then bastardised into another language. We were waiting an hour to enter these palaces by a Spanish security guard. Behind us in the queue were three 'Israeli' tourists who were also there to see these beautiful places as if they were going to see the Great Wall of China or Macchu Picchu. An Andalusian Arab would have looked at us the way a Palestinian might see a Saudi or Egyptian tourist sightseeing the al-Aqsa mosque. For a split second, it was as if there was a mental distinction between those who once lived there, and us. When that distinction faded we found ourselves thinking of Palestine and Iraq as we walked quietly on the skulls of the Andalusians.

3 comments:

julius said...

what a drama queen.

Lirun said...

i can here the oud humming in the background as the frame freezes and the director yells "cut! perfect!"

Julia said...

Tourists always have the strangest behavior, don't they?