Posts Tagged ‘King Fahd Fountain’


As a follow-up to my post, A Tale of Two Cities, I have decided to put together a list of things I’ve learned from all the time I’ve spent in Jeddah. I was supposed to publish this post earlier but then decided that since I’m going back to Beirut in a matter of days, now would be the perfect time. I hope you enjoy reading this list as much as I have putting it together. Here it goes!

Al Baik

Al Baik's Logo

  1. Food, no matter where you get it from, is always great tasting. I’m most partial to Al-Baik, a broasted chicken chain that is deeply associated with Jeddah AND is incredibly delicious.
  1. Wearing the Abayya is not as bad as it sounds. First, you wouldn’t feel like an outsider. Second, you can wear one that’s colorful so you don’t have to worry about conformity. Third, since it covers all your clothes, you don’t have to dress to the nines every time you go out.
  2. Sleeping when the sun comes up is perfectly normal even when you have work in a matter of hours. Day and night have been truly redefined.
  3. Arabic is not the official language, contrary to popular belief. Asian expats don’t speak Arabic, Arab expats have a difficult time understanding different dialects and the locals will only speak in their distinct dialect.
  4. The sheer organization of taxis in this country makes me actually miss the chaos that is Lebanese “service”s.
  5. We’re in the second decade of the 3rd millennium and women still don’t drive, and things don’t seem to be looking up. (more…)

Beirut's Central District (or DT)

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what makes a place a home. Is it having an actual house where you can keep all your things and return to at night? Is it the place where you loved ones live? Is it where in every corner, there’s a fragment of a childhood memory hidden? Is it the place you have a love-hate relationship with? Or better yet, is the place where your ID says you belong to? If the answer is yes to all of these questions, then in my case, I have two homes. Beirut, a city I can never be away from for long, and Jeddah, a city that has always been kind to me, even if I have not felt the same way about it.

To look at it from one perspective, the two cities could not be any more different. Beirut is vibrant, loud, and fast-paced. Beirut is a historical city that is eager to shed this image in favor of evoking comparisons with the greatest cities of the world. Beirut, the charismatic city, is losing its charm, while it’s citizens look on.

Jeddah is not. Jeddah moves at it’s own pace, not caring how anyone views it, never-changing unless it is out of necessity. Jeddah is intriguing. It’s many secrets are well-concealed beneath a dark veil, that even someone who has spent the majority of his live in the city is unable to completely grasp them. (more…)