Journal by Assia

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15 November 2017

Monthly Favourites: August, September & October 2017

I have never been so late for a blog post, but I guess it's better than never. September has been a busy month for me, as I started my master's degree and had to sort lots of things out. I'm studying Conference Interpreting and Translation at the University of Leeds, which is going very well so far. I'm really enjoying the courses, and despite the fact that my social life isn't great - I'm spending most of my time delivering speeches and doing consecutive interpreting - I can say that I'm happy of the choice I made. Interpreting training courses are no easy thing, especially if you're aiming to complete them in one year instead of two! Despite so much studying I have made a lot of time to watch TV series as usual. At the moment I'm watching Stranger Things, but I doubt you'll see it in my next favourites since I'm more of a history and romance than a sci-fi kind of person.

10 November 2017

Discovering Yorkshire - York

Before coming to Leeds, I'd
heard York was very pretty, so when I got here I made a point to go and visit it. Plus, as you know I love historical sites and York is unique in that sense - not only does it have a medieval centre and city walls, but also Roman remains and lots of Viking-themed attractions.
As I'd predicted, I loved discovering York, especially because the town reminded me of Bath, one of my favourite places in the UK.

19 October 2017

Discovering Yorkshire - Malham Cove

Hi there! I'm back with a new travel post from a completely different location. Last time you visited the blog you probably came across some pictures of Palestine - a hot Mediterranean spot - whereas now I'm bringing you back to rainy England, specifically to Yorkshire! I've wanted to visit this area of the country for ages, but it was too far to reach without a car and so I always postponed it. Who knows, I might even be able to visit Scotland at some point this year!
So far I've tried to do as much travelling as I could, although this was my first and only trip into nature. However, I'd love to discover other areas such as Ilkley Moor, or the Lake and Peak Districts. I've also been to York and Roundhay Park (which is quite a trip itself even though it's still in Leeds), the last one being a disaster, since I ended up there on an excessively rainy and windy day. But anyway, scroll down to read on :)

22 September 2017

Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa - Book Review

 Mornings in Jenin is a deep and heartbreaking novel that I can only compare to Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner. It's a historical novel and the story of a fictional (but real) family, which means I couldn't help but love it. From the first page, it's full of suspense and that's why I loved it from beginning to end.

20 September 2017

Ramallah, the Hills of Battir and the Mediterranean Coast

Last but not least, here is my final post on Palestine! I've struggled to make some time for this but here I am, writing about the new places I discovered this year. I'd actually never been to either Ramallah or Herzilya Beach but apparently I have been in Battir, although I don't remember it since I was probably too young for that. I liked to see how in both Ramallah and Battir you could spot some of the typical Palestinian hills, which you can't always see from other cities like Jerusalem or Bethlehem.

11 September 2017

East Jerusalem - El Aqsa Mosque and the Holy Sepulchre

Every time I come to Palestine, I visit East Jerusalem once or twice by walking through the souk and the old city centre. However, this time my uncle and aunt brought my mum and I on an alternative route, walking on the city walls and hence looking at the city from the top. My uncle is a very good tour guide, plus the different route allowed us to learn a lot about the buildings surrounding the main city gates. We also went to the standard places, including the Al Aqsa mosque, the church of the Holy Sepulchre and the souk (marketplace).

8 September 2017

The Old City, Star Street and Banksy's Walled Off Hotel in Bethlehem, Palestine

Three weeks ago I travelled with my mum to visit the Palestinian side of my family. Although most of the holiday was devoted to catching up with my aunts, uncles and cousins, I made sure to document the cities I visited in order to share the journey on the blog. For most of the time, I stayed in Bethlehem where the largest part of my family lives. Bethlehem is a small city and a very popular one among tourists who come to Palestine, mainly because of the Nativity Church and more recently because of Banksy's Walled Off Hotel onto the Israeli wall. I took these pictures in the old city centre, mainly around Manger Square and Star street both of which I love for their history and atmosphere.