In a city divided, a group of complete strangers have come to form bonds that will only continue to grow stronger.
May 16, 2016
Belfast, Northern Ireland is a city divided by hatred between Nationalists and Unionists. For one hundred years, tensions have been high between these two groups. Many were killed, injured, and imprisoned due to the conflict between the protestants and the catholics in these areas, and though violence has since ceased, many residents of Belfast still believe that the peace wall that divides the city is necessary for peace to be kept.
On our bus tour of Belfast, we saw gates that are closed every night from 6 PM to 6 AM, dividing the nationalist and the unionist communities. It’s crazy to think that there is so much hatred and disunity in people that live so close together. It’s even crazier to think that these people that are being physically separated every night are choosing to be.
Despite all of the division and animosity in the people that live near the wall, many unions were made these past few days in Belfast. I have never gotten along so easily and so quickly with a group of people than I have with everyone on this trip. It’s amazing how I have only known the people on this trip for three days, and I already feel like I’ve known them for years.
I am so grateful to be a part of this group, and can’t wait to go on more adventures with everyone. Here’s to more adventures, laughs, and great memories!