I’m writing this one from Amsterdam, where we are waiting for our connecting flight to Imam Khomeni Airport in Tehran. Our delegation has spent the last day and a half in Nyack NY at the Fellowship of Reconciliation offices, participating in sessions that reviewed Iranian history and politics, civilian diplomacy and interfaith dialogue. It’s a wonderful group and we are enjoying getting to know one another. That’s us in the pic above, taken outside the beautiful FOR house office on the mighty Hudson river. As you can see, the women in our delegation used the group photo as an opportunity to practice tying on their hijabs.
As far as group demographics go: there are fourteen of us: ten Jews and four Christians. (It’s by far the most Jews that FOR has ever sent on an Iran delegation). It’s a wonderfully diverse group generationally, ranging from ages 24 to 79. Our only major disappointment is that six original members of our delegation are not able to attend due to visa problems – including the two Muslim participants. We are holding out hope that two of the six might still be able to join us later, but prospects are looking increasingly grim on that front, alas.
At any rate, we are on our way and it’s safe to say that we are uniquely thankful this Thanksgiving day for having the opportunity to participate in this incredible trip. As I wrote earlier, I will do my best to blog whenever possible along the way. Please keep checking in.