Western entrance to the Old City

Friday Morning, Nablus Old City


It’s 7am in the Nablus Old City and a warm light glows from the winter sky above. This enclave, avoided both by the (non)authorities of the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli Defense Forces, becomes the furthest place away from the ensuing violence and occupation.

One by one, the few shops which will operate until midday, crack open the metal doors guarding from the almost non-existent crime in the city. Even then, most of the places remain closed throughout the day.

Nablus, the ancient city otherwise known by the Jews as Shechem, greets any Friday morning wanderer with an empty palette. It’s free from never-ending price shout-outs, hundreds of simultaneous haggles, pre-rolled cigarette smoke and the street-cat gangs roaming around.

Passing by yet another Martyr poster, the almost-daily celebratory AK and pistol fire seems seemingly detached from this morning experience. No one is being buried and no one is being released from the prison.

Hours pass and the midday calls to prayer fill the cobbled streets in the souq. Soon after, with the afternoon sun in the sky, the thunder of Israeli fighter jets shakes the remaining calm away.

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2 thoughts on “Friday Morning, Nablus Old City

  1. Your photos are very atmospheric and your writing convey’s a sense of calm and mystery … I visited Nablus a couple of times, the most recent was 5 years ago and I have fond memories of the hospitality at the Al Jasmeen hotel. Looking forward to following future posts.

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