I've been back in Philadelphia for twenty-four hours.
The first thing I noticed was how green is Mt. Airy, even with the summer heat waves: there is so much grass and so many green trees in comparison with the rocky landscape of Jerusalem punctuated with tropical plants and flowers in every color.
I've been back more than fifty hours now. As I walked in Valley Green Park along the Wissahickon, savoring the intense woodsy greens so different from the more spare, often succulent, tropical greens and burst of color in Israel. I also considered the local bedrock; it is deep grey and black and shiny with mica. The houses here are also dark - I never noticed how dark. I like brown and grey stone. But there something about the golden stone of Jerusalem, from earth red to creamy white, with chunks of chocolate obsidian and flint. The earth and stone in Jerusalem reflects the colors of the skins of all the humans who are said to be created from it. I imagine the people indigenous to the forests here have different stories...
I've been home more than a week now. I have only one word to describe Jerusalem, Israel, Palestine and my experiences there: complicated.
I am still regularly deeply concerned about the state of affairs in Israel and Palestine.
I am also still deeply hopeful and prayerful.
As I close this blog I leave a link to a site whose photos take me back: the Jerusalem Photo Archive.
Thank you for traveling with me.