Beit Anisa

We attended a presentation Thursday afternoon by a psychiatrist visiting the Ramallah hospital from the Royal College of Physicians in England. Dr. Tony spoke about managing children with behavioral problems, and got us into a lively discussion of whether or not corporal punishment was ever appropriate. Some faculty and residents felt that it was appropriate, even necessary, to curb some extreme behaviors. His presence was also great encouragement for the discussion to stay in English. We said our goodbyes to the Pediatrics staff as we start in the UNRWA camp next week.

Thursday dinner was with Harb’s Aunt Wafa and Uncle George at another wonderful restaurant in Ramallah called Darna. They specialized in an old fashioned Palestinian cooking style using a clay oven, or so we were told. At any rate the end result was taste-tastic. Even Josh had to admit he liked the hummus, which was a big moment for the guy who has been subsisting on Mars bars and pretzels. Everybody but Harb had to take some home. Harb had thirds of cucumber/tomato salad. I have no idea where it all goes on his skinny frame.

Thursday night was Beit Aneesh on invitation from Ghadeer and Molly, a UI alumnus we discovered at Mohammad’s the night before. The weekends here are Friday and Saturday, for the Muslim and Jewish days of worship/rest. So Thursday night was a lively night for the young people of Ramallah. The crowd and Beit Aneesh was a multinational ensemble. For sure, there was Palestinian, American, Mexican, German, Egyptian, and Lebanese representation, and I could swear I heard Russian. Much more lively than our quiet meeting on Tuesday. Akmed, Ghadeer’s friend, was convinced that I must have been at least ¼ Palestinian, despite the blonde hair. At any rate, if we could just master Arabic, we would blend right in.

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