A Diamond’s Eye View of the World

a multi-faceted look at the middle east, and the middle west

Time returns to us: autumn in Lebanon

Posted by adiamondinsunlight on October 28, 2007

G leaves tomorrow for a six-month stint in southeast Asia – an in-between amount of time that could be considered a short-term move, an extended business trip, or, as G’s friend M suggested last night, a “temporary foreign assignment”. That way we can say that both you and Diamond work for the CIA, M noted happily.

We were having dinner at Solea, a Spanish restaurant on Monot with a menu heavy on tapas offerings. The restaurant has a tiny, worn blue facade, and I used to wonder how a restaurant that small could survive – were there three tables? five? but after my first visit, I realized Solea’s secret: the interior wraps around and behind the adjacent building, and it opens onto a large, covered patio.

Last night the patio was a perfect place to dine – not too crowded, not too loud, and delightful with the temperate (finally!) fall air.


(G took all the people photos, luckily, as my contribution to the evening’s photographs was this shot of the candle-holder :).)

And the night came with a bonus: Lebanon’s daylight savings time ended at midnight – a week before the United States, which ends Sunday, November 4, and five days before Syria, which ends this Friday.

In English, we describe this process in several ways, most of which involve the idea of going backwards: setting our clocks back, falling back, going back an hour.

In Arabic, a similar expression is used: raja3na sa3a – we come back (or return) an hour. But when I first heard this, I mis-heard it, as raja3atna sa3a: an hour returns to us.

Even if my ears were in error, I prefer this version. Going backwards sounds so negative – but the idea of time returning, of an hour coming back to us so we can live it anew, I love.


2 Responses to “Time returns to us: autumn in Lebanon”

  1. intlxpatr said

    Does “G” have a blog? Does he post his photos anywhere? Or maybe could you send one to me 😉

  2. sporty diamond said

    Photos to me, too, please! Diamond, the mp3 clock radio that you gave us for Christmas must be Lebanese, as it changed to daylight savings time overnight on Saturday, too. Very fitting that it is keeping up with you since you gave it to us! I like how you say an hour returns to us…lovely 🙂 Fall seems to be here, too, as summer baseball finished last night – with the Red Sox winning the World Series – lots of cheers around our house!! xoxo

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