Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The picture to the left is sunset at the citadel in the old city. That's where we actually live, inside the ancient walls of a castle, in a tent, on top of a camel. In case you were interested.

So I was blowing barbucas yesterday with Alexa (half spanish-half english word for bubbles) when three bubbles floating in the air suddenly all floated together and became one bubble. It blew my mind for the rest of the day. Otherwise it's just been studying and reading the required 50 pgs a day of Arabic novels. Vanessa has been hanging out with a new circle of friends from Spain and Alexa loves playing with the other kids. There is also a neonatal conference hosted at the University sponsored by the LDS church and I've been helping out touring the doctors around town. I find it's always more fun showing people where you live than actually living there. Everyone in Syria was holding their breath for about a week when the Lebanese elections fell through, but things look like they are going to hold and so we'll probably spend at least part of the christmas holiday in Lebannon. Below is thanksgiving with the Morgans.

We went to an art show the other day in Mezze and it was really pathetic, only about two small rooms with some really mediocre paintings. It is the best of the three or four galleries in town which are perpetually deserted. It brought to mind how lacking the cultural scene is in Syria (and the Middle east in general). People just don't care about anything outside of money, sex, and food. I guess that could be said for most of the world, but.... I really like Syria, but there is a dearth of cultural life here, there is nowhere to dress up and go out to - the few plays in town are usually really amateur Egyptian or Iraqi plays and poorly attended (we went to one on opening night and there were about 30 people in a huge empty auditorium), nobody you ask can name an artist or even tell you what the last book they read was, there is almost no live music, art shows, plays, exhibits, book signings, etc, and the few events that do come to town are usually attended by mostly foreigners and a few rich Syrians who have lived abroad. Cairo is a bit more happening than Damascus, but for a city of 10-15 million it still has less cultural life than a small city of 10-15 thousand out in midwest America. Why is that?

No comments: