It is just gone

I travel because I care a lot for the beauty of our world and I am often asked why I feel the need to do it all now. I am told I have all my life to see the world, that I shouldn’t feel like I am missing out on something. However, to be realistic, we don’t have time and I have already missed out!

A few years back I had made plans to travel to Syria to see the beauty and majesty of this ancient country, feel the magic of bustling souks, photograph thousand-year-old landmarks and see the smiles and happiness in peoples’ faces as they proudly walk down the streets of their cities and towns.

It breaks my heart in a million pieces that this plan fell apart due to personal reasons. So did the cities, the world heritage sites, as well as the people – they all fell apart.

And it broke my heart even more reading the four words “It is just gone” in a New York Times article, because that’s exactly what it is: Gone! None of us will ever see Syria and Iraq like it was. It does not exist anymore. It is simply gone.

Some people take pride in scars and say they tell stories, but in war, scars are just the destruction of stories, the destruction of lives, and the destruction of a connection to the past we try so hard to preserve.

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