We have a new Monitoring and Evaluation officer, so I tagged along on her tour of the camp today. I never had an 'offical' tour, so while I've been writing about works in certain plots, I didn't know exactly which ones were which. It was great to get out and walk around.
We first saw some of the highly regarded 'antiquities' (the big slabs on the bottom left). These aren't the antiquities that have caused the decision to halt the reconstruction of the camp, but you can see just how well they're regarded by the rubbish around them.
Below is some of the labelling for antiquities that may be part of the decision to stop the reconstruction...
Just one of the many buildings yet to be demolished...
We had to stop for a manoushe break - this has become my favourite snack, with thyme and cheese
And the little boy whose father owns the manoushe shop had to show us his chickens...
We dropped in to one of the schools, just as the change over between shifts was happening (some children go to school in the morning, others in the afternoons), and having three white people walking in resulted in a lot of excitement.
We wandered on and on, and into one of the most heavily damaged areas, where we came across a bulldozer who'd managed to get himself stuck against the side of a building, and take half his roof off...yep, the look on the operator's face said it all.
And on the way out, we passed this piece of graffiti:
"No more to lose cause game over"
I never got to see the total destruction of the 'old camp' as the clearing was well underway when I got here (check out this photo though). But it's still pretty incredible to walk around and see what's left - broken fans still hanging by a thread to ceilings, soft drink bottles still in crates in what used to be shops that are now behind razor wire. I've seen people live in worse conditions than this, but not in plain sight of what used to be their homes. It's sobering.