Independence Day – Algeria
July 5th is Independence Day for Algeria. What an eventful Ramadhan it has been for Algeria. An amazing performance at the World cup that brought them respect and high accolades of praise from all over the world and then today – a time to remember, reflect and honour those who sacrificed so much.
Independence was gained from France in 1962 after many years of a bitter struggle against it’s colonial rule. Them path since has not been entirely smooth but it’s getting there.
I have a particular soft spot for Algeria – for it’s culture, it’s fighting spirit, it’s strength and it’s beauty. I have only been there four times and if I could stay longer I would. Last year I was lucky enough to be invited to go on the Ministry of Tourism SITEV trip around Algeria. Never have I felt the pulse of a country under my skin in the way I have with Algeria. I was thrilled to learn that my name – one that I hardly heard of anyone else having – was actually quite common in Algeria. Each time I have arrived at Algiers airport I have a rush of adrenalin and a buzz with excitement in way that I don;t have anywhere else. I am not sure where this comes from but I have always felt drawn to the country since I first learnt of it’s story when I was 18 years old, living with two Algerian students in Manchester. The two girls used to talk me through the marches and stories of the civil war of the 1990s as we watched the news together. The more I learnt about Algeria’s struggles and it’s victories the more I loved it. And that love has continued all these years.
Happy Independence Day Algeria.