Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Bus

I used to ride the bus to work - it took two buses to get me to the hospital where I was a surgery aid. I thought of this when I saw a post by Ruth Margalit at The New Yorker's News Desk blog ....

The Bus to Eilat

[...] The target of the deadly attack—bus No. 392, riddled with bullet holes and smashed windows—was the same bus I used to take every week for almost two years as a soldier in the Israeli Air Force.

Even on a normal day, the 392 bus encapsulates many of the contradictions of life in Israel. Making its way south from the central bus station in Be’er Sheva to the city of Eilat by way of the remote desert town of Mitzpe Ramon, this bus is typically boarded by partying Israeli teens heading to Eilat’s seaside, along with grouchy soldiers—only slightly older versions of those very same teens—returning to their posts in or near Mitzpe Ramon after a brief respite home. Other passengers on this southbound bus would typically include kippa-wearing Orthodox Jews, as well as Arab-Israeli residents of Be’er Sheva, Russian and Ethiopian immigrants from the nearby Negev towns, and, occasionally, Bedouin shepherds from the surrounding villages. I can picture the too-loud iPods and the dozing sergeants, the landscape of white dunes and winding road, and how an uneventful ride suddenly turned into a nightmare ......

Read more about what happened at TIME magazine - Attack in the Israeli Desert: 'It Wasn't Supposed to End This Way'


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