/The Road to Lebanon

The Road to Lebanon

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WTF is everyone? A failed selfie, some Roman ruins and no people at a spectacular archeological site.

Hey, folks. It’s been a while since I have written a real post and not a list or a round up or a summary of an article published elsewhere. I’m sorry about that. The past year has been a rough one and I am tired. Like, really tired. And it has been stressful. So stressful! My skin has been freaking out and I had to get a mouthguard so I don’t grind my teeth at night from stress. Glamorous! Shout out to Dr. Rounds, the best dentist in the Garden State.

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Raw lamb and liver at Lakkis Resto House in Baalbek.

I have spent the past year decade working non-stop, day and tooth-grinding-night. This year, I filed more articles that ever and finished a book (Tasting Rome is available for pre-order, by the way). If I were not so sleepy, a) I would know with certainty if I should use “was” or “were” at the beginning of this sentence, and b) I would have a lot more energy to celebrate these exciting accomplishments. But alas, I am not longer the chipper young food and travel writer who could run on empty for literally years on end and still power through. But I want the old me back. So I did what I do when I want to regain my youthful vigor: I booked a solo trip to a foreign land. In the past, it was Turkey or Syria. This time, my quest for new energy has brought me to Lebanon.

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Machete-chopped lamb meat.

I landed in Beirut four days ago. For the uninitiated, that equates to having ingested half a dozen plates of raw lamb meat in its various forms (thank god for fattoush and similar roughage)! While I am totally enjoying myself and would absolutely recommend a trip to Lebanon (State Department, be damned!), being a solo traveler has one drawback: not getting to try everything on a menu or to even put a dent into the array of dishes I order. Just one plate of kibbeh nayyeh — raw lamb meat with bulgur — averages a week’s protein allowance, but it’s practically the national dish so while I’m here I am really going for it. I’ll also be visiting archeological sites–Byblos is on the horizon, while Baalbek is in the bank–some rural areas, plus Beirut. Regardless of the destination, minced lamb will be my travel buddy.

2017-02-17T15:15:14+00:00 October 14th, 2015|Categories: Lebanon, Travel|5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. MegRhi October 15, 2015 at 3:21 am - Reply

    I feel you on the teeth grinding thing, friend. Glad you are replenishing the soul. And eating well. Time is our the most finite resource we have. Seems like you are spending it well.

  2. Irene October 15, 2015 at 3:34 pm - Reply

    I’m really happy to see you on the road again….keep that minced lamb coming!

  3. Coral October 15, 2015 at 4:23 pm - Reply

    Brava! Love all the updates on instagram and your bravery to visit regions of staggering beauty amidst immense misunderstanding in the mass media is worth an applause. I want to hear about all the WINE! Can you please tell us about all the wine? Of course when it’s fun and not stressful. Grazie!

  4. Marco October 18, 2015 at 7:33 am - Reply

    Your skin looks pretty damn good in the photo. And your work seems as fantastic as ever. Keep up the good work. There are tons of people across the planet who love everything you do!

  5. Alice Adams October 20, 2015 at 2:38 pm - Reply

    Oh I hear you on the solo traveller bit. Whilst it really is the only way to let your destination seep into your skin, you either end up with so much food in front of you you really don’t know where to put it or not being able to order all of those incredibly good mezze bits as you want. Loved your posts, how good is Lebanon?

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