My Valentine is Beirut

"Love Beirut"

“Flaming Bitter Love” that’s what I feel for Beirut. More bitter than my favourite Lindt 70% Cacao dark chocolate, but sweeter than Turkish delight.

And I dedicate this year’s Valentine ’s Day to lovely Beirut and all that it offers.

Beirut is the only city you get the images of eyes in tears painted in Lebanese flags when you google Beirut along with the word of “love.” Try it. You will see.. Or I’ll make your life easier:

Last year this time, I received an unexpected letter in my flat at Covent Garden, which made me “decide” or just made me leave London and I had to be quick in making a decision for my next destination.

After a couple of weeks spent in Turkey, my curiosity and the blank period of my life dragged me to Beirut, where I developed a true feeling of “love.”

It wasn’t hard at all, and I know that I’m not the only one falling for Beirut in a sudden “coup de foudre.” Yes, that’s another thing, there is no one sole language here, and it’s considered pretty normal to mix all what you have in a single phrase.

Even some Turkish words I spit with an unconscious manner works to get me into a running conversation.

“Hate” is a strong part of “love.” Isn’t it? But it never truly veils the real “love.” As for Beirut, the non-standard taxi drivers, with their non-standard fares can get you to the levels of mental madness yet alone close to the feeling of hatred when you’re in a hurry and just don’t have enough time to bargain for a “service” or “service ein”…

Or the contradictions… One day, you might have visited a Palestinian camp and witnessed the poor living conditions, and a couple of hours later; you might have been almost mashed by a huge Chevrolet in Gemmayzeh. It’s Beirut. Contradictions… I can get a whole book on the contradictions I’ve seen in Beirut.

When love fumes...

The love… Yes, it’s the love. If you think of the reasons why such a beautiful city like Beirut had been bombed by Israel and left it with fresh scars and if you feel them as if they were on your skin, it is love.

Well, I’m going to leave this town soon. I already have a scar on my right hand which made a journalist out of me.

Isn’t it what the real “Love” always leaves behind? A Scar? Well, that’s my Beirut…


1 Comment

Filed under Drafts of my life

One response to “My Valentine is Beirut

  1. Hussein Dika


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