When from Lebanon

When from Lebanon, you find the eternal sunshine of optimism in the darkest alleys

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You know that hard times won’t break you because no war managed to kill you

You know that your city will survive the pollution, and the high rises raping its sky, because Beirut emerged from every earthquake and every tremor alive

You know that the economy sucks, and the instability stinks yet you still open the restaurant you dreamed of, you invest your savings in a new bar, you found a creative agency where Acid microdosing is cool

Wherever in the world you move, you take with you the Lebanese wit, that brightens anyone’s days

You find a solution for every problem, because when you grew up, no solutions were in sight, so you made them up

You are the life of the party, even more so, YOU are the party

When from Lebanon you walk around with pride. Often an empty pride. A nepotistic pride. A pride that shields you from yourself

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You use up your savings to buy the matching plate number to your flashy ugly car

You brag about your connections to some stupid political leader

You never work a day in your life, and you somehow can afford renewing your boobs and iphone every year

You are s0 drunk on pride you never see how broke you are in your bank account and in your heart

You are proud of your religious sect, because it is the only truth you say, and anyone else is ignorant

You swear that Steve Jobs, and Angelina Jolie, and anyone who is a fucking big deal, is Lebanese

And you trust that only a Lebanese can save the day, anyone’s day. And that Lebanese is you

When from Lebanon, you give away your heart, soul and money because generosity is your way

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You give to the cousin you never met, your children no matter how old they get, and of course for the stranger you do the best

You might have no money to eat but you will buy everyone dinner

You will fall in love and propose at first sight

You will pick up your best friend from the airport, drive them to the mountains just because you said so, as you risk losing your job

You make the rare tourist never want to leave. You give her all the hugs she needs. You treat her like the family she has never seen

You embody your ancestor’s spirit of hospitality, because you know in the deepest of your heart that human connection is the closest you get to God

When from Lebanon, you are a master of denial

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You’re not an alcoholic yet I find you getting hammered on weekdays, at your local bar

You’re not a smoker, yet you tell me “you only smoke when you drink.” A packet nonetheless

You’re not a coke head yet you happen to snort it at home on a weeknight

You say you are civilized and want renewable energy, yet you still throw your plastic bottle out of the window

You say you want peace, yet you still kiss your warlord’s ass

You say you got it all under control, yet you still have not looked at your war wounds since the war ended. Wait, was there even a civil war?

You say you want equality, yet you want your man to pay for everything as you chill your ass and ask your maid to take Instagram photos of you wearing fake Chanel, because #lebanesewomen are now lifestyle bloggers

You go get married, when you know monogamy will never work for you. And you compulsively cheat on your wife, who in turn is a whore for cheating on you, because you have not touched her in years

When from Lebanon you are a walking contradiction

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You worship the social norms outside, and step all over them behind closed doors

You avoid talking about sex because 3ayb, yet you have more threesomes than Hugh Hufner

You judge Haifa Wehbe’s looks and her sister’s porn like video, yet you just got back from injecting your lips with botox

You say you do not care about politics and don’t need them, yet you call your uncle the minister when you get caught drunk driving

When from Lebanon, you leave Lebanon. Or you want to leave Lebanon. But Lebanon never leaves you

It is too small for you. Too complex for you. Too repetitive for you

Too broken for you. Too corrupt for you

So you spend your summers in Ibiza, Mykonos and recently Berlin. You do your MBA at Harvard, you get a masters in Fashion event management (can’t believe this exists) in Milan

And if you can’t afford all of that, because you have a family to support, you still go to Marmaris

You build empires in Africa and Saudi. You slave in some big multinational based in Dubai

You leave and still yearn for home, so you listen to Fairuz alone in your condo

You miss your grand mother’s Mloukhieh

You miss gossiping, knowing everyone’s mother and dating history

You miss the magic nighttime adventures of Beirut, .your city that never sleeps

When from Lebanon, you can be spotted from miles away

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Lebanon will always be in you, no matter how many countries you live in, how many places you’ve been, how many accents you have put on, how many times you have changed your name

You are still Lebanese and it will always be bitter sweet

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