Don’t forget you are living in Lebanon…

by thelifesavour

Today, with a little help from friends, we finally got to the bottom of the toy basket and the mystery of the missing ostrich piece from the puzzle. Even though it’s made of wood, it obviously has real life ostrich tendencies and an urge to bury its head under the soft toys, in the absence of sand.


Today, with a little help from friends (and the electricity going off three hours earlier than it was meant to) my own head was gently jolted out of the sand and I remembered where I was- in Lebanon, where not everything goes to plan (even scheduled power cuts that are supposed to go to plan) and where you can’t rely on anything, even water from the taps.

I just don’t understand why the power’s gone off now, it was supposed to be 3’o clock today! I say apologetically to the four mamas with babies and buggies stranded at my 6th floor apartment with no lift.

There is no explanation except for the fact that we’re living in Lebanon as one mama, who’s been here the longest, reminds me.

This is the second time in two weeks I’ve had this reminder. The last time, was from a neighbour one evening when we were discussing the fact that the building, and apparently all of Beirut, had run out of water.

Me: will it be sorted out tomorrow?

Neighbour (shrugs): probably two or three days, maybe the end of the week…

Me (raising eyebrows): Really?

Neighbour (raising eyebrows and whole head, laughing): Don’t forget you are living in Lebanon.

The problem is, sometimes I do forget. Sometimes things go so smoothly, you feel like your life is being valet-parked, or in my case the traffic is being stopped for me by a valet parking guy (my own Lebanese lollipop man). Sometimes you get lulled into thinking it will always be this way, and it is easy to be an ostrich and bury your head in your plans and think that you are actually in control of it all.

But there is no danger of that today, and just in case the early power cut wasn’t enough to keep my head out of the sand, we ran out of water too. Not the building, not Beirut, just us this time. A memo to me.