A promise fulfilled
Back in May, when I had come to Jordan for the first time, one of the places I had visited is a place called ‘Tree of Life’. This was one our way to Mount Nebo. It is a mosaic handicraft store.
A mosaic store, in this part of the world is really not that big a deal. What made this place special is that – first, the artisans make the art right here. So, you can see how the whole thing is done.
Second and more importantly, all the artisans are physically handicapped. Wael (who himself is in a wheelchair) and Hashim had started this place to support the physically handicapped but artistically talented folks. They have a Handicapped Foundation in Jordan.
Last time, I had met them and Hashim’s Bulgarian wife – Zoy. After looking at all the beautiful stuff, I had to tell them the truth – “I have no idea what my wife will like. I will come back and I will bring my wife.”
“Promise?”, Hashim had asked.
As I walked in, Hashim and Wael, both greeted me and then raised their eyebrows. I suspected they vaguely remembered.
“Remember me?”, I asked.
“America?”, Hashim asked
“where is your wife?”
“Aha! So you do remember me”, I said as I pointed to Sharmila.
Wael was so happy that he took Sharmila to the artisans to show how they were making the art pieces.
After a lot of choosing and negotiating, we finally picked up something. Zoya and Hashim were both very helpful. It is too big and heavy for us to carry. So, they will take care of delivering it to our house.
Before we left, we asked “Can we meet the artist who made this?’
And that is how we met Josef (the blue shirt gentleman in wheelchair – who is originally from Palestine) who was deep in his work when we went to thank him for his work. And let him know that his work will have a new home in America.
I am so glad (although feeling a bit lighter in the pocket) that I was able to take Sharmila to this place. And support a good cause at the same time.