Nous.

that would be me!

that would be me!

I’m a 25 year old girl from Miami, who lived and worked in Beirut, Lebanon between December 2009 and June 2011.

I started this blog as a way to keep my friends and family back home updated with everything I was doing..but it eventually grew into so much more than that.

I have since moved back to the States (unfortunately)..but you see.. the thing is.., I CAN’T GET BEIRUT OUT OF MY HEAD! Anyone who has ever lived there, and had to leave, will probably understand what I’m going through. Beirut is like that lover that you know is sooo amazingly bad for you, yet for some reason, you can’t stop thinking about them.. and can’t stop wanting to..well.,go back to them. Some kind of fabulously toxic love affair. (Reminds me of Rihanna’s,,’We found love’,,when in the intro it says, “And when it’s over, and it’s gone. You almost wish you could have all that bad stuff back so that you could have the good.”)

Yep. Sigh…we’ve all had those, haven’t we? Thought so.

Anyway,,

For the past few months, this blog has been on hold as I took the time to decide what to do with it.. Do I shut it down? Do I leave it as is? Do I give it to someone else? Do I continue to blog?

Not knowing was getting frustrating,,and somehow this blog was still getting hits in the hundreds and a significant number of new subscriptions. I can’t explain how happy it makes me to know that people are still reading long after I’ve stopped writing. So yesterday (Jan 4th, 2012) I decided enough was enough. I got in touch with one of my good friends who is on the ground in Beirut, and together we decided to bring This is Beirut back to life (like properly)! woop woop!! yeahhh boiii!

I just can’t let this blog go.. it has been one of the most, if not the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done in my life..and yeah..I just can’t…and I guess I can’t let Beirut go either..at least not for now. Some things you just have to accept. This is one of them.

So, without further ado..

I bring to you my comment extraordinaire turned co-THIS IS BEIRUT-author, Youssef Chaker….he will be on the ground gathering the info, and I’ll be in the States helping to analyze and edit..and together we will author this blog.

Excited? You better be.

Now..to turn it over to Youssef..

Youssef Chaker

Yep. That's him.

I don’t drink, don’t smoke, and don’t swear in Arabic. Don’t you wish your man was more like me?

Now look down, look back up.

I’m in the US… in Lebanon… in Morocco, I’m on a donkey… back in Lebanon… now in Chile… back in Lebanon: catch me if you can!

I’ve experienced wars in Lebanon, electricity cuts and slow Internet connections. I’ve also experienced 24/7 electricity, 1Gbps Internet connections and a villa with a pool. Yet I still prefer Lebanon and will always come back to it.

When I walk the streets of Beirut, it’s a calm and cool journey and my hope is to bring you along for the ride towards a different perspective.

And when I’m not trying to convince people shit ain’t that bad in Lebanon, I pretend to be the Co-Founder and CTO of Jogabo (jogabo.com). I’ve also been know to bend computers to my will!

…..

Yeah so that pretty much sums it up!

Want to get in touch? Email us at this.is.beirut@gmail.com and/or follow us on twitter @DanielleBaiz and @ychaker

Go ahead, do it.  You know you wanna.

70 responses to “Nous.

  1. Samer

    I read one of ur articles about Service. Its very nice and authentic. Keep it up. If u have any project to promote similar aspects of Lebanon and u want a Lebanese partner, let me know.

    Goodluck,
    Samer

  2. Douja

    Wow you are such a talented women, you have such a big heart and great adventures thank you for letting us enjoy your journey and be a part of it :)

  3. Its a pleasure to get to read your blog. Thank you for your add on Twitter, I’ll do the same myself.
    Reading your posts and having a small preview of what you’re experiencing here in Beirut gets me intrigued to know more.

    I’m Gaby (Gabriel for old school teachers) I’m an art director, DJ, contributing writer and blogger.

    Thanks again for your add on Twitter,
    Wishing you all the best!
    Gaby

  4. Armigatus

    Hello Danielle.
    How do we contact you?
    Email? DM? Public comment on a blog?

  5. Hi Danielle,

    How do I go about contacting you?

    TLA.

  6. Strange, it works for me…

    Alternatively, try louis.f.parks@gmail.com

    TLA.

  7. Welcome to Beirut! Your comments have been insightful and appreciated. You have a wonderful blog (now appearing on BDBS’s blog list)!
    Enjoy your stay!

  8. I’ve just added to my bloglist.

    Keep up the good work.

    TLA.

  9. Dani, thanks for the comments on my blog – you can reach me direct via my email. Would be a pleasure to expand the conversation! Cheers, Tarek

  10. Tracy

    Please email me on tracychemaly@hotmail.com. I’d love to include your blog in a little magazine I’m writing for and need some info from you.
    Merci!

  11. Tracy

    Please will you email me on tracychemaly@hotmail.com as I’d like to get soem info about your blog for a little mag I’m working on. Thanks!

  12. Bee

    I stumbled on your blog a week ago and I must admit, it’s an addictive read. Keep up the great posts :)

  13. Hi!!! Do you think u can add my blog to your blog roll? let me know by email if ur willing.
    Thank you

    NS

  14. Greetings!

    Beirut.com is a website that features an extensive database of all things related to the city we love, including events, businesses, news and entertainment.

    Our database can not be complete without the proper listing of Beirut’s online community and so we kindly ask of you, dear member, to supply us with the below needed information so that we may properly archive your work on to our website.

    Thank you!

    Name of Blog:

    URL: (Website address. ex: http://www.blogger.blogspot.com)

    Type of blog: (What is your content matter? is it social, personal, commentary…etc.)

    Description: (What would you like people to know about your blog at a glance?)

    Extra information: (This is where you may include your writing style, interests as well as if you have photos or videos embedded)

    Contact info: (including links to facebook pages and twitter feeds)

    We look forward to featuring your work!

  15. Dar El Akhdar

    Congrats on being chosen “Blog of the Week” on “Lebanon Aggregator”! :)

    http://lebanonaggregator.blogspot.com/2010/07/blog-of-week.html

    Keep up the great work

  16. Greetings!

    We left you our contact information earlier, but here it is again!

    Beirut.com is a website that features an extensive database of all things related to the city we love, including events, businesses, news and entertainment.

    Our database can not be complete without the proper listing of Beirut’s online community and so we kindly ask of you, dear member, to supply us with the below needed information so that we may properly archive your work on to our website.

    Thank you!

    Name of Blog:

    URL: (Website address. ex: http://www.blogger.blogspot.com)

    Type of blog: (What is your content matter? is it social, personal, commentary…etc.)

    Description: (What would you like people to know about your blog at a glance?)

    Extra information: (This is where you may include your writing style, interests as well as if you have photos or videos embedded)

    Contact info: (including links to facebook pages and twitter feeds)

    We look forward to featuring your work!

  17. Güstav (Ghassan)

    Hey!

    From Miami, visiting some family here in Lebanon…

    Just wanted to say, I like your blogging. I’m about to start one since I’m going to be staying here for a little while.

    Just followed you on twitter as well.

    Keep it up!

    Gus

  18. Patty

    Just a little note to say hi. I am a friend of your mom and my daughter and your little sister are friends. I saw Eat, Pray, Love with your mom and I think your travels are amazing, perhaps amazing enough to call them, Eat, Pray, Travel! I think you are a great writer with an amazing sense of humor. You should do something with all of the knoweldge you have. Your travels will be an amazing part of who you are and will always keep your “mind wide open”. I studied abroad in college and never have I been so cultured as I was during that time. Enjoy every minute of your success stories. You can’t even imagine how valuable they are and “who” they will help shape you to be!

    Just a few words from another proud traveler! And, another proud mom! I know your mom is very proud of you!

    Patty

  19. Momo

    I’m falling in love with your blog…keep it up :D

  20. kez

    love the blog! came across it after i did a google search for the book Beyroutes (can’t find it for sale anywhere in the US – any ideas?). how have you managed to do everything listed in your “about me” section – lots of study abroad? i’m currently in a 2 year graduate program – can’t wait to finish and get into some international adventures.

  21. Hi Kaz! Don’t have a clue where you could find it in the states, but I saw a copy this weekend when I was shopping for books for my family at Antoine in Hamra. Perhaps you could get a friend to buy it for you here and ship it to you?

    How did I manage to do everything? Determination and hard work, ohh and I took 90% of my classes online and worked throughout college so that I could travel.. it was always more important to me that listening to lectures, you know? My travels were a mixture of study abroads, family visit, and just pure fun with friends! Do whatever it takes to see the world, trust me..it’s worth it!

  22. Leila

    Hello! I just stumbled upon your blog from another blog, and so far I love it! I’m Lebanese-American and can say I’ve shared some of the same experiences. I have been to Beirut a few times in my life, but never have I been able to experience it as a tourist. Visits were always taken up by seeing family all the time. I plan to go next summer with friends, so I’ll definitely be using your blog to plan some of my travels there! Thank you for your honesty and candidness about the craziness of Lebanon, especially to us Americans! Keep it up, look forward to reading more =)

    • meinlebanon

      Thanks so much for the kind words! Let me know when you’re back in town…who knows, maybe we can meet up and swap stories! :D

  23. Sebastian

    Your blog is addicting! Great post….keep up the good work…this is indeed a treat!

  24. Hi there:)))

    I’ve come across your blog before but now I know who it belongs too! Great blog and keep up the good work. Glad you enjoyed the presentation at AUBOC and meeting you virtually has been a pleasure;)

    Now I will go back to flipping through your blog:)

    D

  25. Hi there,
    Well done with all your travels and with your fantastic blog.
    It is been a while I wanted to visit Beirut and I will finally fly there this weekend, I can’t wait after watching your pics.
    Keep going,
    Diego

  26. Nice blog, and awesome experience you have for your age.

    Have you ever been to Africa ?

  27. MM007

    never noticed this section before
    so you are 24 and you’ve been to all these places?
    I’ll go and have a word with dad

  28. Nanor

    Hi there,
    I’m Nanor Der Boghossian, i’m 26, I’m an Web designer/ Graphic designer & pianist, living & working in Beirut.
    I saw your blog and i loved it ! it’s very YOU*, and of course “i like” -d it on the facebook ;). And since i’m a designer i adored your fb profile picture design so i decided to leave u a small note:) it’s very nice. you did by yourself? what do u work in beirut? where do u live?
    i was thinking of adding u in my friend list… :)

    Nanor

  29. Pingback: This is me, getting a little too personal. | This is Beirut

  30. Pingback: The Happiness Heroes promote a sustainable Lebanon | This is Beirut

  31. You certainly have some agreeable opinions and views. Your blog provides a fresh look at the subject.

  32. Stumbled upon your blog in a “seriously nostalgic about Beirut” mood.. and ended up reading a lot of your posts! It’s definitely going on my list of faves :)

  33. reader

    Hi! What do you work as in beirut? and how come you chose to live in lebanon of all places? :)

  34. Have you seen India??

  35. Salute,

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    We also offer you 10 vouchers to hand to your friends and family to come and enjoy our services. Four of these vouchers will be for laser hair removal treatments for the underarms, three will be for a gorgeous Diamond Micro-Dermabrasion Facial and three others for Cavitation and Velashape ™ circumferential reduction treatment (Slimming) .

    Not only that, but also we offer YOU three vouchers of each treatment mentioned above to treat yourself.

    In return, ALL we ask from you, our lovely (not sure it’s nice, lovely, it sounds you are bribing her) beauty blogger, is to blog about what you saw, experienced and fancied your interest in your blog- writing your own little article about us in your own special way!
    Note that you can bring your camera and snap shots and post them…the freedom of blogging is yours to conquer:)
    Your meaningful contribution is greatly appreciated
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  36. Vulcan

    Hola ! a fellow Miamian here but originally from Lebanon, kudos to you for the bravery and putting up with the Beirut insanity ..
    cuidate chika

  37. firas

    sick…. can u sing as well?

  38. So if I sent you an e-mail. Will you read it!?

  39. Hey, i know, Moi. | This is Beirut can be better than this? I can’t stop reading about Moi. | This is Beirut.

  40. I just added this blog site to my rss reader, excellent stuff. Can’t get enough!

  41. straddlingthefence

    Really enjoy following along on your blog! I wrote a small piece about it in a post on my blog!

    http://www.straddlingthefence.wordpress.com

    Natalia

  42. Me on WordPress

    Great blog! Read what i wrote about it on http://purplefaith.blogspot.com/2011/10/beirut-blogs.html

  43. Pingback: This is Beirut is back..with a vengeance! | This is Beirut

  44. Pingback: Goodbye Trinidad | This is Trinidad

  45. Allen Anderson

    Hi,

    I visited thisisbeirut.wordpress.com through Google and it took the site a very long time to load.

    At first I thought it was a problem with my browser, but after checking the site using Speed-on-Net’s website speed analyzer, I noticed the reported load time was extremely slow.

    You should check and fix these issues. Have a look:

    http://www.speed-on-net.com/?thisisbeirut.wordpress.com

    Thanks,

    Allen

  46. Any Way Guy.. I like this blog.. Kindly let me introduce my self Ima danny Jordanian.. Security Consultant ( network ) and Web applications .. My another major in Travel and Tourism

  47. J the K (basically anonymous for now)

    Wow. I found this blog, and have been reading some posts for quite a while.

    The reason why I say WOW is a good thing. I am Lebanese, but I left when I was 2 years old, I returned last year aged 33. I grew up in Switzerland/USA. I worked in over 17 countries since age 22 and have been on the go for 11 years. I left everything behind to come and be with my parents who are aging and need one of their children by their side. I rank my challenges in nor particular order. As they are all frustrating me in one way or another.

    1st: Electricity. OMG I can literally kill someone for this. How does Lebanon rank amongst the worst countries for power supply? HOW HOW? No pride what so ever. It’s a shame. I live in the mountains so obviously I get less then Beirut, 3 hours for every 24 hours.

    2nd off: How does one settle down in Lebanon when he has lived all his life outside. Lives with his parents in the mountains and has no car? My social life has taken such a hit, my best friend is my Mum… I don’t even know where to start. Friends: include cousins, and their friends…Co-workers and that’s about it! We are a Mediterranean country therefore you would expect people to be open and warm, well I find none of that here. And having worked in the US and for US multinational companies your learn quickly to separate work friends from true friends. Yes it’s no lie my situation with no car and living in the mountains doesn’t help. But I do try. I guess not hard enough…

    3rd Dating: when I returned aprox 1 year ago (28th August 2011)I had several serious relationships prior to me coming here but none to Lebanese woman. I am not nor was I ever under pressure to marry a Lebanese woman. My sister is happily married to an American, my Grandfather married a foreigner too. So that not an issue, whoever I fall in love with and can see spending the rest of my life with will be my wife. But I honestly believed A) that dating in Lebanon would be easier then this and B) that I would find a Lebanese woman to at least start casually dating. Turns out there is no such thing as casually dating. I once took out this girl for dinner, and the next day I was asked how is your girlfriend? Seriously? Even she thought it was awkward when I told her, and she grew up here…

    Anyway, how does one start dating without going through the first steps…it seems people skip that part here and automatically are labelled girlfriend/boyfriend or worse husband/wife. You can’t approach a woman in a bar if she doesn’t know you..You can’t even approach men for a casual conversation. Again I go back to my Aren’t we a Mediterranean country, those people are warm and approachable people.

    I, ignorantly, once allowed a relative to set me up on a blind date. The woman was great, we got a long and had great laughs on the date. Towards the end of the date, it was like we skipped the whole year ahead and she was like okay when do you propose? well not as direct a that but that was the outcome. I kept in contact with her but with very different intentions (don’t worry I told her) yes we remain friends. I was so ignorant to the fact that this is the norm here.

    But seriously how do you start to get to know someone without skipping two years ahead??? You have foreigners who live abroad come by every now and again, but even they have somewhat of an “okay what’s next mentality” Can we not skip a whole year or two? and live them..instead

    I am not even talking about sex, that’s a whole different topic. I am talking about the simple pleasures of taking a woman out to dinner without being labelled or having to commit my future too….

    Again like I said Wow, I am glad to see people like me suffer a bit, I am in Lebanon for the long run. I would love to take my parents and go to the US to live with my sister.. that is the easy option. NO I AM LEBANESE, I WANT TO LIVE IN MY COUNTRY and I want things to be a little easier. it’s a challenge that I accepted.

    But seriously if you guys have any tips on any of the three points please share. because life right now is hard.

    Thanks
    J

  48. Daniela

    Just stumbled across your blog and I have to say I am very impressed so far! I can’t wait to read through all of your posts, they seem to be the only things helping me to cope with my post Lebanon nostalgia..

  49. Tatyana

    I am from Miami, I go to Our Lady of Lebanon, and I have been to Lebanon. Nice blog. I would love to meet you. I would like to marry a Lebanese guy one day because they have many good qualities, but I’m afraid because of cultural differences there would be a lot of misunderstandings. What do you have to say on this topic?

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  54. Howdy! Quick question that’s entirely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My website looks weird when viewing from my iphone. I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to correct this problem.
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  55. Haitham Al-Sheeshany

    Great to E-meet you :)

    Been hearing good things about this blog from many bloggers.

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