Daily Archives: February 20, 2011

The Decision I Make Every Time I Come Home

This is the sign for the exit for Madaba, which is where the school is and where I live – a good 20 minutes south of Amman. Whenever I forget that I am living very far away from home, which is often because life is so normal for me here now, this sign is a nice reminder. If I accidentally took a wrong turn trying to get home from Amman – and then continued on my way without realizing it for like 100 km – I could make it to Saudi Arabia or Iraq. I challenge you to find a place in the US where it lists “Mexican Border” and “Canadian Border” on the same sign.

We’re even closer to the Israeli border, but for political reasons, I have never seen the words “Israeli Border” written on a sign. Instead, it always just says “King Hussein Bridge” which is one of the bridges that crosses into Palestine/Israel. Everyone knows what it is anyway, so not writing the words is a nice way of avoiding any sort of political conflict, especially given that more than half of the residents of Amman consider themselves Palestinian by origin. This is an issue of the sort that those of us who live close to the Canadian border would never have to consider.

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