Any Street

Why did I take this photo? Probably for the iron balustrades. They're fantastic. But now, a world away from places like this, I'm posting this photo because its typical Beirut--there are streets just like it all over town. Densely urban, old and new, bright and dingy:

We're having a great vacation, and I'll update that blog soon (hopefully), but it's always nice to go home again when vacation ends.

Have a nice weekend, everyone!


Under the Umbrella

I do really like these city umbrellas, parasols, sun-shields.

And I can't help smiling over this picture. The umbrella isn't blocking enough sun, so the merchant has crafted greater coverage with a big piece of cardboard. Anything to keep the sun off. The green crate and black ones like it on the ground are typical plastic crates. Bread and produce arrives at shops and restaurants all over town in crates just like those. The gold angular drums are probably empty--but once they held oil or ghee. There's a large water bottle there too. There are plenty of bags of chips behind the produce table, and probably you already noticed the coca-cola sign hanging overhead. There's soda inside, but no coke. Long ago distribution changed and now you can only get coke in a restaurants and big markets. But they'll have pepsi in there, so who cares?

Welcome to Beirut.


At the Car Wash

Most gas stations in Beirut offer car washing as well. It's still done by hand in most places. There are teams of guys who work together and they're usually thorough and fast.

At the car wash, you'll see these old school things. Two rollers and a crank. Put a wet cloth between the two rollers, give the crank a few turns, and the cloth pops out dry. Well, dry enough.

Cool, isn't it?


Another Balustrade Collage

Balustrades are easily forgotten. They easily blend into the urban canvas, rarely emerging from the backdrop it creates around my every-day life. It's when I started collecting them in photos that I finally began to see how many styles there are.

I posted a few other balustrade collages earlier this year. You can see them here and here.

Of course, Beirut has many styles of iron balustrades too, and I think I'll go hunting for them after I return. It'll be just two more weeks and I'll be back, I'll be home.



What sorts of things are you likely to see on postcards from Beirut?

Probably the beaches, the glitz, the glamor, the casinos and pubs and restaurants and shopping malls.  Either that or you'll find photos of Baalbeck, the National Museum, the Sea Castle, Byblos, Jieta, the soap market in Tripoli.

I've never bought a post card in Beirut. Most aren't very appealing.

But I would buy one like this:

Maybe I should market my own post cards.

You can check out what's postcard-worthy in other cities today, because bloggers all over the world are contributing to this Theme Day.Click here to view thumbnails for all participants