Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Bedouin Camp Reflections

Tonight was possibly one of the coolest, not just the temperature, but also awe inspiring nights we’ve had here. After arriving at the Bedouin camp and placing our belongings in the tent, we were introduced to some aspects of Bedouin culture. It’s unreal the number of experiences that we’ve had in the last days, I can’t believe it’s only been eight days, when it feels like it could have been a lifetime.

But after the family style Bedouin dinner, we re-grouped and followed our guide Raz into the desert. The air there is somehow different, its purer. We walked far enough that the lights of the camp faded, the cars passing on the road in the distance and the airplanes that flew overhead, being the only indications that we were only steps from civilization.

After stargazing, we each walked to a spot alone in the desert, not far from the group and took some time to meditate on the week, to reflect, to stare at the sky, to just be with ourselves, removed from each other, removed from all those things that we use to distract ourselves.

I think that those ten minutes in the desert were some of the most powerful minutes of my life. That time, that time taken in this place, with this silence, after this week, was beyond explanation. After re-grouping, we headed back to camp to enjoy the bonfires and the group sleepover.

Leah Kieff, University of Mary Washington
Carrie Aefsky, George Mason University

P.S. Mom and Dad, we loved the notes, so thank you.

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