Showing posts from July, 2009


This post is dedicated to my friend JGM, Kassak Habibi A little before midnight my buddy called and asked me if I could join him on a short hop to Zgharta , Lebanon in the morning. He wanted to visit a friend recovering in the hospital. We might grab a bite to eat if you want to , he said, Ehden is not that far away. I haven't been to Lebanon since October of last year. I feel terrible how a fucking barrier blocks my freedom to cross the “border” between here and there. What a bunch of idiots on both sides. What filth, hypocrisy, shortsightedness and bigotry make me wait in line to be in one of my favorite locations on the planet, a mere hour and a half drive away. Ehden's Paradise is the number one restaurant in the world serving Mezza and Middle Eastern Cuisine. I'm not an idiot to accept the words Lebanese or Syrian Mezza. I have evolved far too much to be such a Levantine Chimp. There's no place on earth where every bite you swallow, every sip you gulp, ev

Sea Side

Ah, Abu Fares, truth be told, I have not been your way in a very long time. With this piece I was pulling on memories of the distant past as well as some accounts from friends. I would be so happy to travel there one of these days and I would definitely let you know if I was going to be there. I needed a little vacation…so I took one in my mind to one of the prettiest areas of Syria. Is it going to be another G&A? Well, Abu Fares, I have a proposal for you. How would you like to collaborate on a fictional tale that reflects life in the area – continuing from where I left off? I don’t know of anyone better to write about this beautiful part of the country. It might be kind of exciting to see what we can come up with. What do you say? I would hate to be presumptuous, but I think our readers might enjoy it. Mariyah ( responding to my comment on her post Sea Side ) Over a period of eight months, from October 2008 till June 2009, Mariyah mixed fiction with fact and romance with

The Dinghy

By sunset, I approached the rocky outcrop that defined the northern end of the long stretch of sandy beach. To cross to the other side one had no choice but to wade through the water. I always sat there on a large rock, never venturing further, before I retraced my steps. I was wearing a faded pair of jeans, rolled. My white T-Shirt, I tied around my head, and my shoes, I hung over my shoulder. The sea came in shyly and kissed my toes. It filled in my footsteps behind as soon as they were formed, obliterating them from existence, erasing them forever from the memory of the sand. I was restless in the summer heat and I had no place I wanted to be at. Driven by the inanity of being I moved forward in the water. The only scent I crave as much as that of a woman is the scent of the salt on my skin. My arms and shoulders were glistening with my perspiration and with the sweat of the sea. I breathed in the intoxicating redolence and dreamed of a hammock underneath a palm tree. The sun reach

Realm of the Damned

On a late summer afternoon in a hotel lobby in Athens, I sat waiting for the heat of the day to abate before I stroll alongside the marina. I've been going there late in the day to hear the harmonious sounds of a sail catching wind and the gush of bleeding froth from the scarred face of the sea. Relaxing in a corner, I was watching people go by. Eager fresh bodies coming to Greece to bask in the sun and laze on her sandy beaches. Tired long faces burdened with the insipidity of personal lives or the stink of business deals gone rotten. The banal display of emotions and the happiness and misery of total strangers filled me with a foreboding loneliness. I have learned a long time ago that I am most lonely when I am in the middle of a crowd. However, I have come not only to accept but to embrace my solitude as a trusty friend and entertaining companion. My eyes were deciphering the flickering images and sending them to my brain, saturating it like a sponge with forming notions. I was