When you go out and picnic,
you must build a fire,
so you can see your teenage brother do all kinds of stupid stuff, which is then copied by 3 year-old cousins, who burn themselves, and although we had everything in our picnic basket, including band-aid, we did not have the burn reliever. He survived, and won’t be doing that any time soon again. We call that a hands-on experience. As for the teenager; well, what can we say? Beirut is too much of an attraction to drop that (and your friends) and go out in the sticks and have a picnic with your family. We should be thankful for the fact that he wanted to grace our picnic with his presence. That doesn’t happen very often anymore. Today was a day off. It’s a rather odd holiday, tagged by my colleagues as ‘consummation day’. It is the day that Maria was told by Gabriel (if I am correct) that she was pregnant. I wasn’t quite sure about the reason why this day is apparently so important that we’ve turned it into a national holiday this year by ministerial decree, until someone told me that the muslims and christians now have equal holidays again. But I checked, and the christians are at 8, against the muslims 4, but maybe some of their days are two instead of one. I don’t know. Not that I am against an extra day off, but with a mind-set like that, it is clear that this country is not heading into, into what exactly I don’t know, but whatever it is, we’re not heading there.
The weather was lovely though. And so was the surrounding, somewhere on the banks of the Beirut river, which is just a little stream at that point.