high walls make good neighbours

Today was an odd day. I facilitated a discussion in inner east Belfast, a loyalist heartland with heavy levels of disadvantage, after a one hour play on living in that difficult place. It was hard hitting, visceral. People were angry, feeling left behind with no sign of the "peace dividend".

The "peace wall" in the bottom snap, is at the back of the venue, and is one of almost 80 physical barriers that mark territory in this place I call home. That number is more than when we signed the Belfast Agreement 20 years ago. That number excludes the mental and psychological barriers
 The mural in the main picture is one representing a loyalist paramilitary group in the area, with the text "defending" the violence used.

Today Republican paramilitaries shot a young man in both legs, leaving him with life altering injuries, showing us how far we have yet to go.

Peace drips slowly, but still it drips. Each time we act generously, serve selflessly, embrace "the other",  we bring true peace closer. That's why we go on.


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