Over the mountains, over the sea and through Israeli security...

"Are you with this group? Please go to the waiting area miss, we need to do another check on your passport. 

"Why are you here? You've been here before? Then why did you come back? You already saw what you needed to see so why are you coming back?"

"Tell me your father's name. Your grandfather's name.

“Are you Muslim? What's your mother's name? Have you always been Muslim?"

"Why are you here?"

"Write down all of your phone numbers. All of your email addresses"

"You can go wait outside, we'll call you back again."

"Why are you here?"

"Write down all of your phone numbers"
"Write down all of your email addresses"
"What's your father's name?"
"What's your grandfather's name?"

"Do you have family here?"
"What are their names?"
"How old is she? Is she married?"
"Are you married?"


I was asked these questions and a number more for a half hour as the rest of the delegation went through passport control. The words "Palestine," "Peace," and "non-violence" were just few that I was advised to not let past my lips while being questioned if I wanted to get through.

Yes, it was nerve racking, yes it was intrusive but what I know is that I got through - quite easily with my light skin and American passport. 

"Why am I here?" you ask. I told you, I'm here to see "Holy Sites." And that is the truth.

And now here's the whole truth - I'm here to see sites, and people, and land that imbue holiness because of the resistance and strength embodied every day standing up against power that says "you have no place here and we will do everything in our POWER to make you continually question yourself... 'why am I here?'