I knew we were going to a divided land, but no news, pictures, videos, nor shared experiences could really convey the heaviness of the atmosphere in this "holy" place that has been horizontally, vertically, politically, spiritually, morally slashed.
Markets are non-secular meeting sites, the hart of a town; full of life, people, colors, noises, flavors, gossip. This heart of the city has been divided in H1 and H2. The place of worship at war between two gods.
We entered the souk (market) trough a revolving gate flanked by armed kids dressed as soldiers. Our guide warned us to look out for the violence coming from the settlement above us, and right below it, there was man whose daily struggle is to tame his rage while trying to make a living under the constant aggression coming from the windows above.
Dan, our guide through the souk, was a volunteer From CTP (Christian peacemaker teams) we walked through what is left of a once vibrant market, then along the main street; Dan telling us: "the military came and closed the street and any business on it" In my head; this capsules of time with goods turning into dust for 50 years.
At the end of the market there is a 10 ft high wall, then a barbed wire fence, right there is one last business; a kid with caged nervous birds.
A recorded interview of the shop owner:
A video of the market: