Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Rainbow over the Vorotan Valley
We are more than a people stuck in a perpetual state of war that the world only remembers when there is an exchange of fire. We are more than a country in an ambiguous in-between place. We are more than the corruption and impunity that engulfs us and the perceived hopelessness that wears us down. We are more than a country that has misplaced its future. And we are, most certainly, more than the negative news cycle.

We are a nation that dared to dream and whose dreams did come true.

We are here at the end of the rainbow and we are waiting.

We are the men and women working, arguing, creating, failing, innovating, stumbling but picking ourselves up again and waiting. We are the newborn babies in whose eyes we can find the future. We are the tired and weary pensioners, leaning out our window sills, reminiscing of days gone by and watching the world evolve in ways we no longer understand. We are the villagers planting and harvesting the bounty of our fertile soil, the shepherds on rocky mountain tops tending to our herd. We are the soldiers guarding our fragile borders and the parents waiting for them to return home. We are the new generation, scrappy, determined, ready to change our world. We are the glorious sum of all our parts. We are the riches in the treasure chest at the other end of the rainbow.

And we are waiting.

In less than a month we will be marking the 25th anniversary of our independence. It will be the first time in centuries that we will be celebrating 25 continual years of being free and independent, of being the owners of our destiny.

Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high
There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby
And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true

On September 21, the land that we heard of once in a lullaby, in the fairy-tales of our childhood, in the stories of our ancestors, nestled among majestic mountains and in whose valleys and villages real people live, we will celebrate our survival. Come, be part of history. Stand with us, rejoice, shed tears of happiness, let your hearts be filled with pride and say to the world - we are here, we are free, we are independent, and we are the owners of the lands of Armenia and Artsakh.

Together, let's ensure that our independence is no longer an unopened gift, a winning lottery ticket we didn't claim, a treasure chest we forgot to open.

On September 21, come to Armenia, stay for a few days, for a a few weeks or forever. Let this 25th year of our freedom and independence be an opportunity to reframe our nation's story and light a path to transformation.

We are waiting.

Photo credit: http://clive.semmens.org.uk/Photos/Armenia/RainbowVorotan.html