4 Countries 48 Hours

I am no foreign correspondent, nor some new age Ibn Batuta (famous historical Islamic traveller, though his job sounds like fun) but when you suddenly realize life is short, you gotta pack a bag, and make the best out of the limited time your approved leave gives you.

So here goes, a quick recap of “4 countries in 48 hours”.

First of all, for the record, I completely suck at personal logistics. I cannot for the life of me organize a birthday party, bill payments, even laundry pickup. If its work that is a different issue, I suddenly turn into a crazy military general with a mission. So imagine how it is trying to coordinate plane tickets, itineraries, hotels etc!

Good news though, I didn’t end up on a wrong plane or stranded in a foreign country.

So here goes, some tips and tricks:

Beirut

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Translation: in the heart of Lebanon

Staying at the Moevenpick resort, the service was great, and the view was beautiful, it made it difficult to want to leave the hotel at all!

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It was great to see some culture after long months in corporate Dubai:

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February 30: a fun little pub/restaurant in Hamra with fun decor as you see, tables on the ceilings and a topsy turvy feel all around

But my heart will always be in Jemiezah

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Torinno: looks like a cave, not classy at all, but where else can you find a former executive creative director from New York spinning some tunes after finding his hear in the mountains of Lebanon and giving it all up?

My trip to Lebanon would not be complete without paying a visit to Raheef Natural shop, a tiny little unbranded shop in Hamra (behind Lina’s cafe). Raheef, I believe a 70 year old man who looks 45, a marathon runner and health fanatic. His walls are covered with medals and plaques for his running wins, which he says simply is due to the fact that all his age group competitors are already dead! I packed up my natural supplements, and got a jar of his homemade peanut butter, sugar free and made of olive oil (tastes just like peanut butter btw!) and walked out to say goodbye to my beloved Hamra.

It was raining and the people in the street were oblivious to it, simply carrying on with what they were doing…

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Next stop, Dubai then Cairo then Madrid…

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