Saturday, September 25, 2010


The drive here yesterday was long & not so easy. Drivers kept getting sleepy, I suspect due to the rather slow speed of the convoy yesterday & also the sun that was beating down our faces. But the it was beautiful, surrounded by countless hills. We arrived at our destination at about 5pm, another sports hall. But instead of heading there we parked a little off the hall, at an open car park. The group leaders were then informed that some extreme right wing politician insisted that we were not to have the use of the sports hall & were to spend the night at the car park, where there were 4 mobile toilets for use. The local community who was there refused to budge & called in their top guns & some hour & half later, we made our way to the hall, where there are toilet & shower facilities.
There was dinner provided by the locals, sandwiches & drinks, which was obviously greatly appreciated. Then it was just hanging around, chatting etc. Most of the men set up their tents on the grass within the compound of the hall. Some others chose to sleep in their vehicles, Azura & I included. Definitely less cold than Milan. In fact it was comfortable.
I was again chatting with the Irish, interesting blokes, big men with bigger hearts. Their involvement in the cause dates back to the 70s. Norazmi & I headed to the nearby shops after some negotiating with the organiser as no one's allowed to take their vehicles out. Why? He needed to get supplies; cooking oil, eggs, etc. And boy did we shop. And this morning's breakfast, baked beans, omelette, mashed potatoes all courtesy of the Aqsa men. Our initial deal of one stove each is now null & void. They put the stove to far better use than Azura & I ever will.
This morning is leisurely thus far, before heading off to the town centre with police escorts, again to drive around & create awareness. As it is the shopkeeper last night was asking about us.
Will update whenI can. Please let everyone know that IKIM interview is every night. And I'll be asking some of the int convoy members to say a few words too.
Salam from beautiful Greece

(message from Azra via email)