Where Emirs Once Stood

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Long stretch of road with loops and endless curves with sturdy old woody trees lined along the sides afford graceful swaying of the boughs and rides. Under a canopy of woodland trees in threads, our eyes readily tread on the path ahead, scenic as in covers of children’s storybooks. The Skies above clear and bright with wisps of cottony clouds congruent with the sun that illuminates the path to the Shouf in every bend.

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In Two Good Healths!

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In a fast changing city where sometimes people’s harshness might feel like a sharp blade, there are still time old traditions that make living in this country worthwhile. Despite it all, despite the noise and the commotion, there is still a light that shines from deep within this country, a light that says we live together, we take care of each other, and we belong in this weird mesh of abstraction that is Lebanon.

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The land of Milk, Honey, and Sweets

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Lebanese pastries are a pure delight. Originally, our ethnic pastries used to be very sweetened. Today, and since a decade or so, they are made with lesser sugar. Lebanese sweets are a landmark in our country’s culinary journey, and are among the best in our region and have landed a world renowned fame for some families who have been in the business for generations.

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When Music Enchants

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“I feel that music on the screen can seek out and intensify the inner thoughts of the characters. It can invest a scene with terror, grandeur, gaiety, or misery. It can propel narrative swiftly forward, or slow it down. It often lifts mere dialogue into the realm of poetry. Finally, it is the communicating link between the screen and the audience, reaching out and enveloping all into one single experience.”

Film composer Bernard Herrmann.

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The Holy Month of Ramadan

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A certain calmness starts to take over our Beirut’s mornings today as the first day of Ramadan is upon us. Today many Lebanese start fasting, praying more earnestly, watching what they say, thinking twice before speaking, being kinder to their families and friends, contemplating on life, respecting, laughing, and loving. The month of Ramadan begins with the sighting of the new moon, which varies from country to country.

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Beirut’s Beacon of Faded Glamour

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Change occurs very rapidly in the city of Beirut. It has changed often and quickly and is still changing now. The Sporting Club, located in Al-Manara, lies there guarding the sea, in the shadows of the ferris wheel or the Luna park and facing the sakhret el Rawche (the pigeon’s rock). It stands there in stark contrast to the anarchic growth of high-rise buildings surrounding it. Untouched by modern esthetics, it remains one of those great city institutions. This beloved venue that evokes strong feelings of nostalgia among the city’s residents is the last man standing in terms of guarding Beirut’s old glamour days, maintaining its sense of identity.

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The Dance

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The Dabke is an Arabic folk dance that started in the mountainous regions above the Mediterranean coastline and the Tigriss River. It is of possible Canaanite or Phoenician origin. According to some sources the Phoenicians were the first teachers of the dance in the world, and the Dabke is a representative descendant of the Phoenician dances.

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Among the Old Alleys of El Mina

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On the way to Tripoli, as you drive pass by Chekka, the feel of the country changes and you will directly notice that modernity has not laid its extending hands from this point forward. The road to Tripoli feels like life’s long journey, where one leaves life’s excesses and moves to a less hectic and chaotic state of being. The highway is calmer and the sky opens up to a horizon of a forgotten shoreline.

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