Mind the Gap

 Lamb and dried fruit tagine

Point of No Return will be taking a short break and will be back in the New Year. Until then, posting will be light to non-existent.

As this year marking the fiftieth anniversary of the exodus of the Jews from Algeria draws to a close, I’m leaving you  to feast your eyes and ears on this page on Algerian-Jewish culture, courtesy of JIMENA.

Wishing all Readers a very Happy and Prosperous 2013!

The popular singer Lili Boniche

4 Comments

  • Dear Sylvia
    As ever thanks for your erudite and insightful contributions – in any language!

    Reply
  • I thought I might as well finish the job and give the translation.
    Here it is.

    Oh Traveler where are you going? You’ll go, tire and return
    How many naive people have regretted it before you and me.
    Oh Traveler where are you going? You’ll go, tire and return
    How many naive people have regretted it before you and me

    How many crowded cities and empty deserts you have seen
    How much time you have wasted and are yet to waste
    Oh you the Absent, in the land of others you never stop running
    Fate and time continue their march, and you don’t mind

    Oh Traveler….

    Why is your heart so sad and why are you standing there unhappy
    Hardship won’t last and you neither learn nor build anymore
    Life won’t last, like my and your youth.
    Oh unfortunate one whose luck has deserted him, like it did me.

    Oh Traveler….

    (This is the part Enrico Macias leaves out)
    Oh Traveler I’ll give you my advice, take it as soon as possible
    See what’s best for you before you buy and sell
    Oh dreamer, I’ve heard the news that what happened to me has happened to you
    So does the heart return to its Creator, the Most-High.

    Oh Traveler…

    Reply
  • Comparing the Taha version to the Macias version, I've noticed that Enrico Macias has left out the last stanza, when the Traveler returns to his home. And for good reason.

    Here are the words:

    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya u twelli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli
    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya u twelli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli

    Shhal sheft al beldan l’amrin wa lberr el khali
    Shhal diyya’t uqet shhal tzid mazal u tkhelli
    Ya lghayeb fi blad ennas shhal ta’ya ma tejri
    Tzid wa’d lqudra ulazman unta ma tedri

    Ya rayeh ….

    ‘Alach qalbek hzin u’lash hakda ki zawali
    Matdum eshedda wila tzid t’allem u tebni
    Ma idumu liyyam wa la idum seghrek u seghri
    Ya hlil u meskin lli ghab sa’do ki zahri

    Ya rayeh ….

    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya wa twalli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli
    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya wa twalli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli

    Ya rayeh ….

    (This is missing in Enrico’s version)
    Ya msafer na’tik usseyti uddiha ‘abekri
    Shuf ma yesleh bik qbel ma tbi’ ou ma tshri
    Ya nnayem jani khbarek ma zralek ma zrali
    Hakda redd el qelb bel jbin sabhan el 'ali

    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya wa twalli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli
    Ya rayeh win msafer truh ta’ya wa twalli
    Shhal nedmo la’bad el ghaflin qablek u qabli

    Reply
  • Thanks for the excellent page, Bataween. I spotted there the very popular song "Ya rrayeh" (O Traveler/Emigrant), an Algerian song originally by Dahmane Al-Harrachi which practically everyone has heard in Israel and is very popular among Maghreban Jews the world over, here interpreted by Enrico Macias, the emigrant par excellence.

    It speaks to those uprooted restless wanderers among us and the yearning for home.

    There is even a Hebrew version now by a musician of the Andalusit with a muwwal.

    By Enrico Macias
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=9vBO8KWpqXs

    By Rachid Taha
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuPhCmmfKiE

    Hebrew version
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOYWuuQ_oAM

    Reply

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This website is dedicated to preserving the memory of the near-extinct Jewish communities, of the Middle East and North Africa, documenting the stories of the Jewish refugees and their current struggle for recognition and restitution.

Point of No Return

Jewish Refugees from Arab and Muslim Countries

One-stop blog on the Middle East's
forgotten Jewish refugees - updated daily.