Lebanon Inbound; I am back!

 

Dear Lebanon

 

I am writing to you this letter so as to settle whatever ill feelings we have had in the past. To be honest, we both were not fond with each other’s presence from the start. The level of tension reached its peak a year ago which led to my departure from your soil. As you may have felt it a fortnight ago, my feet touched You at 5am and you welcomed me with a sunny sky (and an unbearable humidity- no no i did not start complaining!!).

First of all, let me be brief about my experience abroad which leads to my current state of mind about You. The change of culture and way of life was straight forward and easily adjustable. After the torment I went through and the instability + stress within, a calmer, more focused and civilized city was embraced. I was always in love with London and cheated You with it. However, since our struggles and miscommunication, London seduced me and we consummated our relationship with me moving in with it. However, do not be jealous Lebanon, they always say you never forget your first (in which case is You). I want to remind You of the positive effects You have on people who leave You behind, taking you for granted and with time regretting Your absence.

Personally these are the traits that I missed and could not find abroad; shallow or not, I assure you many others feel the same way.

Yes, public transportation is very well advanced abroad (compared to the local ones) and I was obliged to use for my errands. Do not get me wrong, I liked being driven around (who does not!!). However, some minor incidents (strikes- lateness) left me frustrated and longing for my car and the infinite traffic jams around the city (yes the famous traffic I missed!!)

Okay when abroad you hear many Lebanese bragging about the mediterranean weather and the ski/beach in a day myth. London’s winter was mild and very pleasant (I have to grant him that-do not be envious!) and I did not feel there was a real winter, the rainy days were calm and nice. Though I felt that when I decided to come back to You, it unleashed its cold and rain on me in June (but very understandable-One can not control how a break-up might affect people!). I missed Your sun and (even) humidity and your coastal beaches and nature/green scenery.

I made new friends abroad. Some, I am still in contact with till now on a daily basis and planning a reunion in the up-coming months. This trip opened my eyes as to how friendly relationships should be and the importance of real friends in one’s life; that unbreakable bond that ties real genuine people together. This realization made me want (and did) to spring break my friends’ list clean. I got rid of any negative buzz and I already feel happy and serene.

On the same topic, however one thing that left me perplexed is the fact that although one misses his friend and wants to see him , he is faced with a complex scenario. You just can not meet up with a friend on the spot after a phone call. An appointment- like date is decided upon for the up coming days and voila you have to wait till D-day. Personally, that is one thing that is not available in You. Miss a friend? Pick the phone and see him/her on the spot. Voila Your beautiful easy-going(ness!!!).

Funny enough, I missed Your crazy chaotic life though this was one of the main reasons I left you behind. From the first day I came back to you with a white flag in one hand, you welcomed me with a big bang. I was not expecting You to blow a few explosions here and there. I know it is not in Your hands the political situation and extremism level that was reached within Your soil. I am very sad about the current situation  But to make you feel better, there are many people like me who will always be there for You (especially when they go abroad and see your worth!). I missed how ignorant people analyze politics and get all worked up for nothing. I missed how people talk bullshit and when placed in a situation where a decision has to be taken, they are seen running the opposite way of their primary thought.

When I was living in Your city, I did not take into consideration that You had one of the best nightlife in the region (if its not the best- knowing that Dubai’s nightlife is in fact Lebanese imported and made). I just took it for granted and enjoyed it at times and BS-ed about it at other times. I have to admit and apologize to everyone who constantly shared this feeling, You are the best. Your venues, parties, rooftops, concepts, cocktails, drinks, food and MUSIC are above standard. Even Your shabbiest pub is welcoming. I missed a good drink and a good music and I am happy to say that I was satisfied with what You offered me.

I think I am going to stop on that point. Lebanon, i have known You thoroughly, inside- out. Your deep secrets are safe with me (as I know mine are as well). The Lebanese spirit is alive in every one of your nationals. whether inside the country or abroad. People who are frustrated with You (as I was at the beginning) are those who have not had the opportunity to leave You behind for a few months and realize their loss. For those people, I encourage to try living without You and get back at You about their experience and frustration. Knowing the real Lebanese, he won’t be able to handle the change for more than a couple of months. I parted with London on very good terms; we will always be friends and I will always visit my favorite city. Every relationship has its ups and downs and I do not promise that ours will be anything different. I will always have my frustrations and will lash out at You. However, keep the following in mind:

livelovebeirut

 

Your one and only ….

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Author: Patyl-Astrid

"Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the common place, the slaves of the ordinary." Cecile Beaton

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