January 10, 2007
My one and only resolution for 2007 was to write in this journal at least one observation a day starting January 1st. The lack of resolutions is not because I have nothing to be resolved about. In fact this lack was due to the fact that I had too many things to resolve that I did not know where to start. Few minutes ago, just like its many previous ill-fated sisters, this lonely resolution looked like it was about to go down the drain before it even started. I have already skipped 10 days. With this in mind, I decided to keep it for as long as I can. So here I go. Let’s see how long it lasts.
Today’s observation is about a conversation at a dinner thrown by a very nice couple that I hardly know. I was glad I got the warm welcome I did (maybe because I was not invited :-)?). One recurring topic of conversation was how the talk in Amman these days is about the "new bridge" and the "new gym in town". This got me seriously thinking. The Amman I live in is talking about shortage of gas cylinders, skyrocketing fruit and vegetable prices; skyrocketing prices PERIOD, another anticipated hike in fuel prices, and the now almost forgotten hanging of Saddam Hussein. Small talk is refreshing at times. But I must admit that the feeling of guilt over the many miseries brewing around made me feel awkward to even take part in that talk. I know some might say that I need to chill...but it is too cold outside and I can’t help but think of how lucky I am to be warm while many people have to suffer the cold. And these are not strangers sitting in some remote areas where no one sees them. These are not invisible people even though some would like them to be. These are people we see, we probably work with, we buy stuff from, we greet on the street, and maybe ones we hardly suspect that they might be struggling in silence.
Building bridges is great. But the greatest one of all is the one that helps bridge the gap between those who are fortunate and those who are not.
Are we becoming too complacent that living in our own paradise has made us blind to the hell right next door?
She calls out to the man on the street
sir, can you help me?
Its cold and Ive nowhere to sleep,
Is there somewhere you can tell me?
He walks on, doesnt look back
He pretends he cant hear her
Starts towhistleas he crosses the street
Seems embarrassed to be there
Oh think twice, its another day for
You and me in paradise
Oh think twice, its just another day for you,
You and me in paradise