A Blog from Amman, Jordan, Online Since 2004.


My two weeks are almost over and I feel the wave of appreciation ebbing away.

(The television shows an old black and white Egyptian movie, the man is wearing a fez. Their voices are horribly squeeky, but they’re both dressed so gorgeously, and they’re totally making out. Why are modern day Egyptian dramas filled with kitchy gold for both rich and poor and men with a million wives? So much for the days when half naked didn’t refer to a pair of shorts rather than women seriously scantily dressed. Not that I have a problem with people being scantily dressed, I don’t see why everyone tries to control everyone else. Arabs should seriously learn to mind their own business.)

It’s really hot, and it’s almost September. When does it start getting cool again? I always try to remember to blog something when the weather starts cooling down (or heating up when I’m freezing and waiting for the summer sun) as a mental note for a time like this, but for some reason, I never get to doing it.

(I’m reading this really good book that talks about a Greek family, a lot more on that later, for now, I’ll just mention that that I find it amusing how Greek culture is so much closer to the Levantine culture than the other Arab cultures like those of the Gulf, Egypt, and North Africa. A Greek salad is the salad we make for lunch everyday and baklawa, baklava if you will, will always be a delicious local variety to me, one you can buy from Zalatimo.)

With the summer winding down, the crowds are finally starting to thin. The Jordanian license plates are appearing to be on the increase (although its really all the other varities of plates that are actually decreasing), but the crowd is still a killer most of the day.

(An old Fayrouz play is now showing, I think its “Baya3 il Khawatem”. I adore Fayrouz to bits. A3teeni il naya wa ghani. Pass me the flute then and sing, the best of prayer is song, and even when life perishes, the flute continues to lament. Have you spent an evening as I have done among vines, abstaining from all that will come forgetful of all that has passed? Forget illness and its cure people are nothing but lines which are scribbled on water.)

I’m also in a particularly homely mood, trying to finish all the stuff I need to do and trying to redesign this blog, which I’ve decided has too many bugs to fix, so I might as well start from scratch. I’m dreaming of pixels these days, and I mean that quite literally.

(Abdel Haleem brings a perfect end to my night on the television along with the call for prayer that I hear outside, gana el hawa, gana. I think what’s showing on tv is also out of a movie, set in Beirut. Ah, Lebanon, picking up her pieces, healing her wounds. Ya rameeny be seihr eneik el etnein, matooly wakhidny we raieh fein. Why not tell me where we are headed? To a new wound? Or nowhere at all? Walla alla fahr mewadeeny? The poor Arab world, I just read that 25% of the Palestinian Parliament is held by Israeli forces. Ramana il hawa, ramana.)

Off to more pixel dreams on a hot summer night.


Yeah, pictures




  1. That’s so lovely Roba, now on the scantily clothed women issue …
    Kidding kidding, I wouldn’t ruin this wonderful post with a booby-trapped comment :)
    Pass me the flute and sing is by Gibran of course :)
    I totally agree with you on the good old times…
    I saw a 1950’s era car today, and I was thinking. There so much art in the curves of that car. we get the idea that a car is a female creature, because of her elegance, beauty and probably curves. But these days, everything is cheap, machined and just plain cold.
    In the Arab movie industry, it’s just as bad, from the 1900 till 1960’s and 1970’s the Arabic movie industry was on par with Hollywood … then… we ended up with hishek bishek

    Anyway…. too much to talk about …. and a real joy to read Roba …

  2. I havn’t seen snow in years :(

  3. bakkouz i guess we are going to have loads this year, i hope so :)

    roba that’s a nice post,

  4. Yeah, Inshalla, even though i still won’t get to see it since it doesn’t ever snow in Aqaba, hell, it rarely rains :P

  5. I agree that the Egyptian drama nowadays suck. It’s all about bunch of clowns who keep repeating themselves, too cheesy, and not even funny. The old Egyptian movies are way much better.

    I adore “a3tini el naya wa’3anni” for Fairuz, I love its bizarre lyrics.

  6. “Ah, Lebanon, picking up her pieces, healing her wounds”

    Lebanon is a “he” not a “she”!

  7. What a lovely post Roba .. you really took me with you on the trips you took in it ..

    Who doesn’t love Fairuz? and who doesn’t adore Jibran’s work .. how if the two come together …

    I crave winter every day and I wish it would snow big time :)

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