Thursday, September 10, 2015

So disturbed by the refugee crisis!

When I backpacked across the Middle east, I got a bus from Ankhara, Turkey to Damascus, Syria. I landed there at 9 pm, Friday and realised that every ATM was closed until Monday morning. I had no syrian money, no banks open, nothing to get from the bus station and 15 km to Damascus. A Syrian walked up and asked me if I needed help, and when I explained my problem, he gave me cash an equivalent of 50 USD to help out! When I called him on Monday to return the money, he told me to give it to the needy.

Then I took a boat from Syria to Egypt. I thought it was a 3 hour journey when it was actually 3 days, since I didn't understand the language. I had neither food nor water on the boat. Every passenger invited and shared a meal with me for those 3 days.

There were so many such moments - in no land - America, the British Isles, Europe or the rest of the Middle east did I experience so many random acts of kindness as I did in Syria!

I think of all these generous Syrians reaching out to me - a strange Indian woman with a backpack - and I wonder if they're among the refugees, if they're on a boat, on foot or hungry or exhausted somewhere. And I worry for them.

I'm doing the extreme of  'Think globally, act locally' with 'Worry globally'. This refugee situation has really touched me. I can't stop following their treks across nations, the coverage, the photos, the general hopelessness of it ... as if I was one of them!! I worry for their future, for the kids' emotional survival, for the cruelty they might encounter (like the tripping hun photographer). I'm crossing my fingers for a magic solution, greedily looking out for a welcoming country, a loving gesture by a policeman to a child or an old person, for a kind macedonian girl, for anything good.

I'm looking for signs that people are treating my generous Syrians as well as they'd treated me.I'm looking for hope that they are going to survive.

I guess I'm looking for hope too that people are kind to each other, or else what hope would I have that they'd be kind to animals? That one day animals will be fully free of the human yoke, spoon and fork?

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