Conversations with a family living beside the Deir al Balah war cemetary, like it’s Gaza cousin but smaller. It lacks Ibrahim’s fine touches, but is another small oasis where locals come to photograph themselves in a lovely setting, to smell the grass, to escape the noise of daily life in Gaza.
And just as Ibrahim does, the family brought out coffee, tea, and sat for talk.
They are fortunate, to live next to a green area and to harvest the olive trees within the grounds. But like most other youths in Gaza, their sons have no work. One attempted university for 2 years but gave it up: too expensive and no prospect of work afterwards anyway.
We joke, morbidly, that when the next Israeli war on Gaza comes, we are ready. “Where can we go? We’ll be here, ready, in our homes. Like the last time.”
Such humour is not uncommon, and not hard to comprehend either, given that most in Gaza, where half the population are youths, have grown up under the brutality of the Israeli occupation, invasions, the siege and the last massacre.