November 06, 2012

Favorite Time of the Year

This is my favorite time of the year. I probably say that about every season, but somehow, this one is IT. If you go back in my post history, I probably have a ‘Favorite Time of the Year’ post every fall. I like every season in this place, probably because they are so distinctly different and do not really blend unnoticably into one another. In Holland, the seasons sort of merge. In Lebanon there’s a cut-off point; a period where you notice a sudden change in temperature and light.

Fall brings darkness. You see the sun set when you come back from work, and the lights of the city go on while you walk back. I used to drive to and from work by car, but a sudden parking issue brought an end to that some time ago, and I am glad it did. When you walk, you can ‘feel’ the town. The habits of people change with the seasons.

Wintertime started not too long ago, and when I leave work, it is dusk. And so I walk through the city, as everyone hurries home. I pick up my daughter from her sewing lessons in an old Lebanese building, where one floor fits two (that’s how high the ceilings are!) and where the hallway light switch makes a ticking sound because it is on a timer, in an old and traditional neighborhood in Beirut, and together we walk home through streets and traffic, as we discuss our day.

We move from dusk to darkness, and when we we’re almost home, we cannot see the sidewalk anymore, because there’s no government electricity, and the street lights are off. The headlights of cars on the street light our way. And then we’re home.

We draw the curtains, make tea, and wait for the other family members to trickle in. My favorite time of the year.


Anonymous said...

I have a question. In yor previous post there is a picture titled "A watering hole & Beqaa Valley in the background" and it shows a small pond on top of a hill. Now I understand from one of your previous lectures that the soil is somehow water-permeable or something like that, the rocks are like chalk and full of holes and the water runs straight down through the rocks, in the end creating massive sink holes. There is a name for this kind of rock, you mentioned the name but I was not paying attention and I forgot. Anyway, given the nature of these rocks, why is this pond still a pond? Why doesn't the water go straight down and disappear in the mountain? Please explain... I am very interested. You know who I am.

Sietske said...

Goed luiteren, broertje apekop!!! Het heet KARST. En waarom zakt dat water niet in de grond? Weet ik veel, maar ik zal het voor je opzoeken, en dan laat ik het je weten!