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Journal Entry:

I have a new favorite word/personal catchphrase in Arabic: “Salaamat!” I have grown to love this word because it is versatile and generally has a joyous connotation, especially when I say it in my elongated pronunciation and high-pitched intonation, which always manages to get a giggle out of my Palestinian friends. Salaamat is the plural form of “salaam,” which means peace. However, salaam is used as a greeting, a farewell and for general well-wishing. Now for me, salaamat means many greetings, many beginnings and many hellos. I see it as a timeless greeting filled with hope, joy and caring toward those I say it to. Even when I use it as a farewell, I see it as many good wishes and not so much a goodbye. This is how I feel about my journey in Palestine, my experience and toward the relationships that I’ve nurtured with those around me.

While I don’t have to say salaamat to my friends and new family in Ramallah and throughout Palestine just yet since I am staying here until October, I do want to extend a heart-felt salaamat to my Reach The World family.