Friday, March 18, 2022
Thursday, March 17, 2022
Happy Birthday to me!!! if there is anything that this trip to Lebanon has taught me, is to roll with the punches. I am usually really good with sticking to my planned itinerary and ensuring that everything I want to check out has been explored but this time around, circumstances beyond my control totally shifted my plans. The places I wanted to check out were closed due to bad weather so there was nothing I could do about it. My Airbnb host with whom I have managed to bond with, invited me to meet her friends and hang out so that we could have a relaxing day driving around the mountains and checking out cool places.
I took her up on her offer and had the best time ever! her friends were super cool and we got on so well that they want us to hang out again before I leave. I actually got a request to extend my trip but I can't because bills have to be paid and money made so I have to go back to work........unless I win the lottery. I was impressed by how chill I was about my plans not going as expected, I took everything in stride and actually had a good time. Normally I would be so upset but I put things into perspective and realized that within the few days that I have been here, I have seen and experienced quite a lot and I have had a pretty good time despite the challenges that are going on in Lebanon. The new friends I have made have had a positive impact and showed me so much generosity and I can honestly say that I couldn't have asked for a better birthday. Here is to turning a year older gracefully, rolling with the punches and making meaningful connections with other people. Ooh! and enjoying some of the most delicious Lebanese dishes.
Tuesday, March 15, 2022
Today the plan was to explore the southern part of Lebanon but before heading down south, Karim my tour guide decided to show me some sites in Beirut. We drove around downtown town then he took me to check out the following places:
Zaitunay Bay: Located at the Beirut Marina, the place has a boardwalk filled with restaurants, cafes and shops and is considered the city's most prestigious coastlines.
Pigeon Rocks: These rocks are 60 meters (197 ft) high and were formed in the prehistoric era by geological movements. The rocks are a polar landmark in the city and If you want to get close to them you can pay a small fee to get on a boat and pass by them.
I Love Beirut: What is a trip to Beirut without passing by this landmark to take an instagram worthy photograph?
After we were done with downtown, we headed to Beiteddine Palace which was built in the 1800s by the Ottomans, construction was completed in 1818. The palace was used by the Ottomans then later the French as a government building. These days it serves as the president's summer residence. It was snowing and cold but I still manage to get a few photos.
Next stop was Tyre which is located in southern Lebanon and is one of the oldest cities in the world that has continuously been inhabited. It was one of the most important cities of the Phoenicians and the color purple is believed to have originated from here. The Phoenicians used snails from the ocean to make the dye for color purple which came to be associated with royalty. In this city you can find Roman ruins that have been designated a UNESCO world heritage site. The ruins are quite impressive especially after learning what the sites were used for historically.