I arrived into Beirut on Friday by bus from Syria. The ride from the border is spectacular; the Lebanon Mountains are a beautiful site.
Beirut is indeed intense, the pension/hotel I stayed for two days was nice, although the staff was of nasty energy, and they are very grouchy people with much bitterness and anger stuffed within. The area was in the Maronite Christian area that is on the east side of Beirut. On Sunday, they were having a beautification of a Marionette priest who died fifty years ago. I was leaving from the hotel to the flat I am house-sitting at and had a difficult time getting across town.
The whole army was out in force for the security of the gathering, armored vehicles, tanks, and some anti-aircraft equipment was staged to prevent a problem. I found it interesting, seeing so much military in the mist of a city. I did make my way to the neighborhood I am staying at, although the taxi had to go an around and about way to get there.
The city is fascinating regarding the many groups that are at odds with one other. The army is everywhere, some street are closed to traffic; I thought the police carried heavy guns in Egypt; heck what they were carrying was nothing, compared to what a person observes in Beirut.
Nevertheless, all is calm – for now, next week could be a different picture. Many say, calm this month, but they could be warring next month. The area I am staying is one of the nicest areas in Beirut, on the west side, which is the predominate Sunni Muslim area. Everyone that has visited or lived in Beirut has commented regarding this area of Beirut.
The flat I am in is very spacious and comfortable; the cat is very sweet, and the building is safe if any trouble starts in this neighborhood. I will not be doing any day trips for a couple of weeks; I am tired and need a rest. I will be updating with posts regarding Beirut.