This summer I got a pilgrimage tattoo in Jerusalem. It was an amazing experience. You know what's even better? After writing about it on my blog Diolog magazine -- the Texas Episcopalian digital magazine -- asked to publish it. Even better? The editor Carol Barnwell paid me with a pecan pie. It was delicious. I can only hope the article is as well. Check out how it starts below and then head over to the digital site to read the rest!
Apparently, getting tattoed on your chest is one of the more painful spots one can get a tattoo. When I buzzed the “call up” button with the name “Razzouk” sketched in Sharpie above it in one of the winding alleyways of the suq in the Old City of Jerusalem I didn’t know that little tidbit. What I did know was that I was about to be in contact with a seven-century old tattooing tradition.
Indeed, for nearly 700 years tattooing has been the profession and the prestige of the Razzouk family. I finally found the parlor by asking a jeweler near the Jaffa Gate, “I’m looking for a tattoo artist, do you know…?” Before I could finish my sentence, the jeweler said, “You mean the Razzouks?” Their name and notoriety preceded my rendezvous with history.