If you didn’t read Natasha Kozaily’s story about getting out of Lebanon in yesterday’s Caymanian Compass, do yourself a favour, pick up a copy and read.
Natasha’s story was about more than just escaping war-torn Lebanon.
It was a story about family, love and the wonderful experiences in a beautiful land.
The events that Natasha experienced in Lebanon before and during the outbreak of the fighting with Israel will change her entire perspective on life, if it hasn’t already done so.
She’ll no longer look problems in the same light.
When you’ve seen death and destruction at the hands of man you tend to not dwell so much on the day-to-day petty issues of living.
If Natasha’s story does nothing more, it should remind each of us just how good we have it in the Cayman Islands.
While we bicker about who is and is not a real Caymanian, mothers, fathers, uncles, aunts, grandmothers, grandfathers and innocent children are losing their lives in fighting like that in Lebanon and Israel; in wars that aren’t their making.
While we argue about who can and can’t stay in the Cayman Islands more than seven years, the people in war-ravaged Lebanon are anxiously waiting for relief agencies to make it to battered villages to bring them something as simple but as necessary as clean water.
While Caymanians verbally beat up expats and Caymanians and as expats verbally beat up Caymanians and expats, those delivering aid to Lebanese villages have to worry about unexploded ordnance and land mines.
Sure there’s a cease-fire in the war between Hezbollah and Israel, but it’s a tenuous one. The average Lebanese may realize the fighting has stopped, but that doesn’t make it any easier for them to struggle through the destruction and rubble left behind of their homes in an effort to return to some sense of normalcy.
While Hurricane Ivan brought us so much destruction here almost two years ago, we didn’t experience the loss of innocent life the Lebanese people have.
Like the survivors of the most recent uprising in Lebanon, we pulled together after Hurricane Ivan.
It didn’t matter if we were Caymanian or expat; whether we were a high-paid lawyer or a struggling domestic.
We turned to each other for help.
We forgot about our petty differences.
Every man was our brother and every woman our sister.
The next time expats and Caymanians start to beat up on each other, remind them how fortunate we are here.
Natasha’s story should be a reminder to us all that there are bigger issues involving life and freedom than our personal differences.
We shouldn’t be putting anyone down, especially each other. It’s not the Caymanian way.