Lighthouse 100 – February 14, 2020

Lighthouse 100th anniversary festivity hosted close to 100 men, women and children today. The hosts were Oded, Hayuta, Roni, Jaber, Mark of Kibbutz Urim, and Mark of Kfar Aza, Shmulik, Shelly, Nahshi, Limor, Or and the two filmmakers (this is their last time as such, next they will attend as “normal” participants), Mary, Radir, Rami from Gaza by phone, and thousands of beautiful anemones decorating the nearby valleys, trails and tracks.
Two groups of travelers arrived and sat down, several others came by and inquired about the strange bunch sitting inside. The first group to be seated were people from the north of the country. The second group was mixed with people who had traveled together in Japan and came from various parts of the country. The two groups sat with us, listened, heard us and responded. The feeling was that they were with us in heart and mind. One of the visitors, a neighbor from Kibbutz Tze’elim, was very moved and hugged Radir tightly.
The coffee and anemones brought to us two lovely families with their children: one from Faran in the Arava desert, father Rotem, mother Rotem, and their children Naomi, Lia and Oded who sat and listened, and empowered us. The other family was from Kibbutz Hanita – mother Shani, father Sagi, and their children Joel and Ariel. The father told us about the carpentry shop he shares with his close friend from a neighboring Arab village. He insisted that human closeness taught him to what extent their similarity is so much more significant than their differences.
Two other friends – Khaled and Naif, impressive in their fluent Hebrew – came from the Arab village of Abu Talul, near Kibbutznik Jaber. They expressed their appreciation for our circle.
Other guests were Nomika and Shmulik, and finally Dganit, Ilan, and Jill from Eilat/Be’eri.
Rami told us how irritated he gets with leaders busy with slogans, who refrain from improving the lives of people on the ground. To Limor’s question, he said he would go out and sign up 100 Gazans who declare they wish to live in neighborly peace and refrain from any violent acts. After he is through signing people up in Gaza, he is more than willing to cross the fences and sign up a similar number of Israelis with the same intentions.
Summing up, the circle, its existence and awareness of Gaza have been disseminated far and wide.