Traveling through Rafah border . . . again!

Yesterday’s journey across the Sinai and the Rafah border into Gaza was uneventful . . . and THAT is the big news!   In the middle of January I was turned away at the border and the Egyptian guards told me “La-La-La-No-No-No”.

They tried to pull that same stunt on me yesterday.  The first Egyptian guard did not speak English and when I showed him my passport, he said “La-La-La.”   I asked “English?”  He said “La”.   I said “English!!” a bit more forcefully.  I wasn’t going to be turned away this time.

He took me to another guard sitting in a small guardhouse with 5 other men all smoking and acting very casual.   He asked me in English “What do you want?”   I told him “I want to go to Gaza.”   He said “Do you have your papers?”   I showed him my passport and told him that my name is on the list.   He said “La-la-la.”   I told him “Check your list.”   [Under my breath, I said “Check your DAMN list!”]

He made a phone call and in less than a minute he told me “You can go.”

I have no idea who he called but his manner towards me changed quickly after that phone call.   The rest of the process went relatively smoothly.

I am very certain that my successful journey back to Gaza is due to the intervention of the Palestinian Ambassador Dr. Barakat El Farra and his assistant Maissa Hidmi.  Shukran! Shukran!  Shukran!

Palestinian Ambassador Dr. Barakat El Farra and Maissa Hidmi

Palestinian Ambassador Dr. Barakat El Farra and Maissa Hidmi

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Filed under Egypt, Gaza, People

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