Shifting scenery..

I received this from a friend of mine today,

“I pass this place everyday on my way home, it’s right by where I live, and I have grown accustomed to the scene in the first picture.  Since I’ve been in Lebanon, it’s been a gathering spot for locals to chill/smoke/watch TV.  A lot of handicapped people go there as well.   The second picture I took a few days ago, I felt an unexpectedly strong sadness when I saw what happened, like a staple of the neighborhood had been eviscerated.”

How everything changes, from one day to the next.

Beirut, Lebanon


Beirut, Lebanon




Filed under life in Lebanon

18 responses to “Shifting scenery..

  1. I’m 90% sure I know this place. This used to be a parking that they cleared to build some new building. They stopped, and I guess that’s when people started gathering. I guess they now want to re-start the construction project!
    I hope they find another place to gather! I know the region and I think those where the last meters without a building in them!

  2. The people go. The Graffiti & Posters stay.

    • meinlebanon

      I know they weren’t supposed to be using this area for personal entertainment..but what does it say about their options? It is a poignant reminder of the lack of public spaces in Beirut..

  3. Mok

    It’s on Mar Elias, just north of Class.

  4. Now THAT’s inspiring!

  5. people we need
    CULTURAL CENTERS, PUBLIC URBAN SPACES, Buildings and institutions dedicated to the community,
    then people won’t have to go to an empty parking lot to gather and talk and exchange,
    this is really too shameful
    we build bridges, municipality towers while nobody care for the essential needs which are a must for any “civilized” community!

    • meinlebanon

      I whole heartedly agree with your thoughts..It hit me yesterday when I was having lunch in a restaurant down town..(the restaurant was complete with the latest high tech accessories, automatic sliding doors, modern furniture( can there be enough money to fund projects like these??..and how can people continue financing restaurant after restaurant, pub after pub.., when there are so many people in Lebanon who lack the basic necessities?? really is shameful..

  6. The world cup is for us Brasil no comment just dot it Nike LOL 😉

  7. Karla

    You know, I’ve been reading your blog for a while. I don’t personally know you, but you seem pretty hypocritical and immature from your writing. It’s cute how you complain about the existence and success of these places, yet you seem to spend most of your time in pubs and restaurants. Also, a restaurant isn’t government run- it’s financed by customers, such as yourself. What do you want the restaurant to do, close shop because poverty exists, and theres a lack of social services? What do the two concepts have to do with each other? If you actually cared about the causes you claim to care about, you would act instead of charading around and contributing to the situation. You’re the very definition of an extreme consumer. Maybe you could spend some of that substantial money you happily throw towards food and alcohol, beaches, clubs, bars, towards social services and charity? No, that would actually require some effort, unlike pretending to be a concerned citizen. You’re a joke.

    • Karla, this is absolutely unnecessary. live n let live. This is all what a blog is about anyway. No need to give lessons. What you don’t like to read, just don’t read or criticize the content but not the person behind it.

      I like the before and after in this post. Pretty interesting indeed.

    • yourfriend


      wow. i think someone needs a biiig huuug.
      miss grumpy wake up in an existential fit realizing she can’t do anything about the things she “deeply cares” about???
      so u decided to take it out on someone who is “consuming” and enjoying one of lebanon’s only successful fully functioning industries, hospitality???
      awwww… poor tree hugging saviour of our lost generation of evil consumers…
      sooo… since u been reading the blog for a while, i’m assuming u have time on ur hands, and since ur such an amazingly superior person than the rest of us, u must be doing tons of things to better the world we live in right? which wud totally justify you writing this comment, coz you know, ur fulfilled and accomplished in the charitable ways of philanthropy and social development. and never would you be petty or bitter and try to put down someone else, for not being as amazing as you are.

      Coz, i mean come on, if you did that, it would totally make you a hypocritial joke, right??
      and ur definitely not a big sad bitter petty joke of a hypocrit??

      but it just occurred to me that u probably believe that u are better than everyone else. mmmm… in which case i’m wasting my energy typing all this beautifully sardonic comment.

      enjoy ur life karla of the disenfranchised & maltreated. champion of the poor and bane of the consumerists of the world.

      and remember, since u probably can’t find someone to do it, if u cross ur arms and try to reach for your shoulder blades with ur fingers, then turn ur back to a mirror, you can make it look like someone is hugging you. take a picture, coz i’m pretty sure it doesn’t happen often.

      there there, O wonderous sad one of the net, this too shall pass… but in ur case, once again, i highly doubt it. (this turning out to be regular sign off for me huh)

      peeeeeeeeace Karlitaaaaaa !!!
      (you don’t mind if i call u karlita right?!?)

  8. Thanks Danielle for always spotting things we Lebanese no longer notice.

    Karla, dear, you don’t have to be immature in your response to Danielle. If you find her blog so irrelevant, why don’t you stop reading her? I don’t agree with you, we as people, cannot be activists on every single cause out there, that’s why there are different activists for different causes, and part of what we do as bloggers, because at some point this is the best we can do, is report what we say, support a cause by talking about it.

    So chill Miss Karla 🙂 and don’t take it out all on Danielle, she is not a hypocrite nor an immature person, hehe trust me, don’t judge… listen, read and don’t judge. You could have simply stated your point of view without the emotional and subjective side.

  9. “definitely not a big sad bitter petty joke of a hypocrite”
    Its actually so sad reading her comment…not even worth the energy and thought put into replying on it.
    What I have noticed on this blog from the moment I started reading and following Danielle’s posts, I have found some inspiration, a thoughtful and consistent content reflecting one of the most interesting concepts. I mean how often does anyone find a young person touring the world, on a quest of discovery and adventure?! Posting stories and her own reflections as they happen?! Seriously! how many of you came across someone, anyone with an interest in your country that has nothing to do with politics, social conditioning and stereotypes? A person who is just here with all the interest in the world to know more, respect and grow trying to make your country (which happens to be not even light years close to theirs). That alone deserves the amazing recognition, salute and respect!

    I, for once have been able to get even more interested in MY own experience here after years of neglect and of the “let live and let go” attitude.

    Danielle, you deserve all the thanks and respect on being here, your posts, the time you take to reflect and share your stories.

  10. They could have waited till the World cup finished @ least..

    As for Karla i loved your courageous opinion, even if i don;t agree with you. I say keep reading what Danielle writes, and i hope u will meet her someday and u will know that she is not hypocritical and definitely not a joke.

  11. @Karla…

    The next time you’re near a dictionary, look up the word “blog” (as merriam-webster had put it):

    a Web site that contains an online personal journal with reflections, comments, and often hyperlinks provided by the writer; also : the contents of such a site.

    So even if I create a blog, and post photos of me killing puppies with a hammer (sorry PETA for this example), it’s still my opinion, hence the word “personal” in the definition above.

  12. Micheline

    Hope those people find another place to enjoy their evenings… Where will they watch the rest of the World Cup games???? As usual, love roaming around Beirut with you 🙂

  13. Maraki

    I read this post and saw the pictures and then I read the comments and saw the picture…
    They are almost similar, but in the latter we are more lucky, since we are in the before phase, now let’s jump in to the after phase and I really hope we will do better than what’s been done to our country!

  14. Beautiful post, Danielle.
    I know exactly where that is and having lived not far from there for a few years, I had grown accustomed to seeing that same group of people 🙂
    I agree with Jinan.
    We do need places where the actual Lebanese people can hang out. Not just places we build to accommodate for tourists.

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