Observations v111010

  1. Living where I can run into friends and colleagues as I’m sorting errands or at a cafe is lovely.
  2. It seems that window shades are drawn at salons catering to women whereas those serving men are more open to the passerby, and it would seem that there is no mixing in these spaces (at least those I pass).
  3. Coming from the PNW, Crocs, Cons, and Birkenstocks are common place, as they are here- unexpected.
  4. Reading for the fun of it- hadn’t realized how much I was missing that…
  5. The world continues to shrink: last weekend I was introduced to a couple who rent a summer house in my hometown of Cottage Grove, and whose niece is good friends with girls I grew up with.
  6. I love the hidden spaces of the city, like the Secret Gardenesque doorway, that are missed due to ignorance, or lack of awareness.
  7. Dodgey electrical grid part two…. First experience of being stuck in the elevator on Saturday. About three minutes of stillness and darkness, utterly unsettling, especially considering the friend with me who was working hard not to have a panic attack.

I was rebuffed (gently) for my lack of exploration of Beirut’s food scene, which, admittedly, is quite amazing.  On top of the inspiring array of fresh produce, many, many eateries, from the high end to the gritty, street-side can be found in most any neighborhood, fitting most any budget.  A few of my favorites so far… Bread Republic, tucked in a cobblestone side alley, serving amazing, “slow food” inspired pastries, breads, soups and other palette pleasing delights.  Faysal, a neighborhood staple; manouche -grilled, thick flat bread smothered in zaatar and cheese- perfect breakfast on the fly. More “tasting Beirut” to come…