January 14, 2014

Kindness, and my Weekend

We were going up to the mountains for the long weekend (Monday was off, Prophet’s Birthday), and so I prepared. I meticulously packed all the food and stuff for cooking I needed, because I intended not go to any supermarket while up there. I was going to stay indoors, in front of the fire place, with a good book. And so I packed all kinds of nice things, in anticipation of my fire place.
No snow in the mountains, but plenty of mud.
That nice sheep cheese I got in Holland. A real pork sausage from France  (impossible to get here), a good bottle of white wine, those chocolate bars with salt I had been saving, a pack of cheese fondue, and lots of other delicious  things. I was going to cook myself, had the kitchen all to myself (the aunt was visiting Tripoli), and so I brought the fish, the mushrooms and the spring onions, and I brought treats for the rest of the family, things for breakfast, butter with extra salt (I know, all kinds of bad stuff) and of course the dog food, and a special can for the cat, and I could go on and on for a bit longer. You get the point; I had a whole crate stored with things I was looking forward to to eat.
You know something is going to happen, right. Indeed. It did.
I try to walk around the puddles. My daughter walks right through them. "Your feet will get wet!" Who cares?
And so I was driving up the mountain, over the Damascus Highway (I think that’s what it is called. It’s the main road going from Beirut to Damascus, although who still goes to Damascus these days?), my things stored in the back of the truck.
Until I hear a car honking behind me.
I look in my mirror.
Really, what kind of people are they, I am thinking. It is so obvious that you cannot pass, and now you will honk your way through? No way buddy, I am driving where I am driving. You will have to drive over me if you want to pass, dude, because I ain’t moving.
I can't remember how often I have done this as well . . .
. . . picking up the ice of a pond. Funny to see certain behaviors being perpetuated in your children.
But the honking continued, and continued, and continued, it was clear that this was a most persistently annoying person. I looked in my mirror. One of those mini-vans, stacked with 25 people, all tight in place,  driven by the world’s most maniacal chauffeurs.
I sighed, and moved into the other lane. Slowly, very slowly. By all means, he should not think I did this because of his honking.
I let him pass.
The air was sharp, cold and brisk. Lovely. It reminded my of late January afternoons in Holland, when it is so cold that the inside of your nose dries up because of the weather.
And when the van was beside me, it slowed down, and just about all its passengers were gesturing to me. Pointing to the back, and using all kinds of sign language indicating I was losing something.

Losing something.
Losing something?
What do you mean, losing something?
The back of my truck had opened. (I drive a pick-up)
And all my luggage, including my food, had been strewn over the past 4 kilometers over the Damascus Highway.
Our shoes weighed like five kilos each when we were done. Everything was wet and soggy
They had picked up the most important things. My husband’s suitcase. My computer. His Ipad, my study books and agenda.
But the food…. alas, they said, they could not save that, as they made the familiar gesture indicating ‘nothing at all’. All gone. Run over. Flat.
I bet they ate all my food. My mushrooms. My fish. My chocolate. My cheese fondue. I don’t think they touched my sausage (it’s pork, you know). The whole crate full of goodies. But you know. I don’t care. They bothered to follow me, and give me back my computer. My agenda. The Ipad. My books. My husband’s suitcase.
They were gone before I realized it. I should have given them something. Their kindness took me by surprise.  I hope they enjoyed the food.
A lovely afternoon hike in the mountains above Beirut
And so, this weekend, I had to go to the supermarket anyway. Gone were my hibernation plans in front of the fireplace. When hubbie suggested we go hike through the mud and rain, I even agreed on that one.
Kindness is so important.


Anonymous said...

Is pork hard to find in the Christian sections of Lebanon also?

Anonymous said...

Great post!
By the way.... starting a few months ago, Spinney's in Hazmieh and Ashrafieh has been carrying frozen Tesco pork sausage...

Anonymous said...

With all due respect, since pork is sold In Lebanon, why is the blogger stating that its impossible to find? Is it only sold underground or on the black market?