So when my Lebanese friend and classmate told me about a trip being planned to Lebanon, my eyes lit because I was excited by the prospect of going to a new destination and exploring a new culture, a new way of life. On the other hand, when I mentioned this plan to other friends, they couldn’t understand why I would put myself at risk due to the conflict in the region. Also they couldn’t understand what there was to see in Lebanon and I got a few horrifying stories of how a black African girl would be treated in Lebanon.
All these negative stories/views left me with a little dilemma and I was close to cancelling my plans. My Lebanese friends re-assured me that I would be ok and that I shouldn’t absorb all the negativity and that I should look to the positives that Lebanon had to offer and that a single story isn’t a reflection of the whole.
I ended up going on the trip and had a truly amazing time from exploring cultural sites to eating WAY too much (i can’t resist good food) to partying it up at #WhiteBeirut and building and solidifying friendships.
I felt so much warmth in Lebanon from the immigration officer wishing me a belated birthday to friendly local Lebanese keen to know more about my heritage and culture (I felt a little bit of a mini celebrity tbh and who doesn’t like that?? #SassyDoes 🙂 ).
I guess I learnt a HUGE lesson from this trip and its simply that we can not let negativity, the media, the views of others take over choices, our beliefs etc or let them make us stay hidden from what the world has to offer. We need to make our own calculated choices/decisions to see the world through our OWN eyes and make our own judgement.
I leave with you with a taster of what I got up to in #MYLebanon with a mini gallery. #Indulge + #Enjoy + #ExploreLEBANON
SassyFact about Lebanon: Byblos (city in Lebanon) is the oldest continuously living city in the world.