Saturday, January 29, 2011

When my brothers and I were kids, more than a few people asked my mother if we were Yemeni. And then in junior high school I met a girl who actually was from Yemen. And I didn't think we looked remotely alike, but seeing these kids in this beautiful photograph, I do see a resemblance.

Recent events in the Middle East have me reading up more on the region, and I learned that Yemen is the poorest country in the area. Nearly half of all Yemenis live on less than $2 a day.

I have a friend who's vowed she'll never visit Israel so long as its treatment of Palestinians remains unchanged. She doesn't want to support current policy there with her tourism dollars. I'd really like to see Israel, North Africa, and other parts of the Middle East. But after reading articles like this one from 2009 on Dubai, I am conflicted.

I don't know. Smiling faces like these and the opportunity to make connections with people and exchange ideas and something of one another's culture seems more important, to me.

Your comments on this image are welcome, and encouraged! And a question for the photographer - .ash - photo - if s/he is so inclined: Is there anything special about this moment, day, trip, or place beyond what you've shared on Flickr that you'd like to add or comment on here? Along with other vivaca visitors, I would love to know more!

Location: Hajjara, Yemen ★
Photo courtesy of .ash

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