I went to Palestine last October (2016) with SkatePAL to coach skateboarding to the kids (and adults) there. Here are my 'tourist' shots of the trip on our down time.
It goes without saying how wonderful the time was spent with the children and young people at the skatepark in Asira (photos of this to come in my next post), coaching alongside Will, Ruby, Andrew, Arnar, Matias, Rachel and Paula and those few hours in the afternoon were some of the best times ever... I even landed my first ever kick flip!
However, half way through my trip, I received some terrible news that my uncle, Nicholas Shaw, had passed away. As you can imagine, I was distraught.. no idea what to do or think. I hadn't experienced any person close to me dying. It was so hard because I wasn't at home with my family.
I was a bit of a mess the last two weeks of the trip and didn't do any extra-curricular activities (sorry Will and Ruby!) so I missed out on some incredible experiences such as visiting Bethlehem and spending time with a lovely family learning how to cook traditional Palestinian food - I just wanted to be by myself so much of the time.
That all said, I am proud of my achievements in Palestine and all things considering, I did get out and about, explore, draw (although not as much as I would have wanted to) and take photos. I maintained my enthusiasm and love for working with children and communities through skateboarding. Thank God, or whoever or whatever may be up there, I could focus on that. :)
It was a pretty spiritual journey and I found it confusing and emotional that I was in such a religious and politically interesting place when I found out about Nick. As you can probably tell, I'm not particularly good at articulating my feelings.
I dedicate this blog post and its photos to my late uncle. They are also for you all to enjoy and be inspired from. :)
I love you Nick x
|Mini Old City photograph I took for you, Nick, as I know you love model villages. A day later you passed away and I never got to show you or even tell you about Palestine! I hope you heard me wailing to you in the hills. I love you. RIP forever.|