So I have been in Lebanon for the past 5 months. And my movement to the country, apart from my humanitarian education, deep love towards chatting and plenty of free time, has inspired me to create this blog.
Lebanon is such a controversial, unusual, multireligious and multinational country that I find it totally essential to tell you guys about it! It is the place where poverty, the presence of Syrian refugees and street beggars contrast with the dazzling yachts, designer shops and luxurious hotels. French boutiques coexist with the ghost buildings which were destroyed during the Civil war 1975-1990. But mainly Lebanon has a lot of really unique historical sites, some of which are considered to be the oldest in the world! Not to mention the stunning nature: the mountain serpentine, emerald rivers, the famous cedars of Lebanon, a symbol of the country, and of course the sea. But first things first!
I would like to tell you a little about myself and about my blogging purposes, to determine the objectives and tasks as they always taught us in university 😀 A little note: I am a very emotional person with the ability to mix things up, starting from one point and finishing in a completely different area. I can talk about mountains and steep serpentines and then seamlessly switch to the love and romance theme combining it with the discussion about pleasant dish at a restaurant on the beach))) But I promise I will do my best to stay structured and diligent!
So I moved to Lebanon for love! Not out of love for the country, but to the particular citizen of this small state. This same love has led us to a rapid, but conscious and very much desired marriage. My husband is an Orthodox Christian, a ¼ Lebanese (“not an Arab, but a descendant of the Phoenicians” in his own words) and ¾ of an Armenian. This fact shouldn’t surprise you, as during the time of the Armenian Genocide in 1915, part of the population immigrated to the territory of modern Syria and Lebanon. Therefore Lebanon, especially its Christian areas, has become a home to a fairly large population of Armenians. There is an area in Beirut, where Armenians fleeing the genocide, established their first settlements. It is called Burj Hammoud. By the way, the leader of famous Shiite political party “Hezbollah” Hassan Nasrallah was born in this area. I will tell you more about this interesting place in one of my future posts.
Let us continue. I have been knowing my husband, his name is Mike, for a really looong time but we are newlyweds, so it might seem like I am going to mention all the difficulties of the first year of marriage here concluding by “obviously women are from Venus and men are from Mars”. But I must admit that we live in a harmony, our fights barely last longer than 10 mins and we consider that time as a “painful long-lasting break” which we don’t want to be in 😀 But seriously speaking the goal of this blog is to tell you about the specifics of life in Lebanon and my own experience as a foreigner (Russian girl in Lebanon), rather than the personal stories of our very private life. So I hope that with the considerable amount of jokes and easy attitude towards everything, I can convey to each of you something new, interesting and positive!
And to finish this introduction I would like to state: NEVER STOP DREAMING because dreams come true! But not vaguely and abstractly, make your dreams concrete and detailed. I remember myself lying in bed in Moscow, tired, lost and tangled in the line of work, long-term complex relationships, health problems. But I was dreaming! I forced my brain to produce a picture of my bright and glory future. And the picture was as follows: a house (without details), a garden with lemon and pomegranate trees, fun-loving husband, who is always in a good mood, a lot of relatives (have you seen the movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”?). And the SEA! Not right next to our house, but a little far away, to be able to admire the panoramic sea view from the window and watch the fishermen boats, glowing in the darkness like many little fire sparks. Back then I had never been to Lebanon to imagine myself here and wasn’t in touch with my future husband. I had a prestigious job in Moscow and didn’t plan to practically move. I could only dream about it in the remote corners of my consciousness… But here I am! We have small pomegranate and lemon trees (and spicy red peppers too!) growing on our balcony inside the cozy and warm house with the sunny side. I have a delightful, funny, kind, most precious husband next to me together with his large Armenian family! And every evening from my bedroom window I see a stunning views of mountains and bright turquoise Mediterranean sea with fisher boats, swaying on the waves, twinkling in the darkness like a flock of fireflies …