Foto Friday – Views from the castle


MB has some external shots of the Crusader Castle at Byblos, Lebanon, somewhere in his photo library, from a previous visit of a few years back, but he is too lazy to search for them. So, for today’s Foto Friday post, MB gives HX followers some shots that he took last week, from atop the castle, of the surrounding countryside, without any shots of the actual castle itself.

Some of the views are quite typical of the Lebanese coastline, countryside, and townscapes. Read More

The Wedding of David & Myriam (8)


The Party.

Lebanese wedding parties are mad crazy affairs, and the wedding party of D&M was no exception. The venue was a resort complex called Orizon which is located about 5 minutes drive outside the town of Jbail, on the road to the famous church of St Charbel. Lunatic tribal dancers waving sticks, swords, and guns over their heads, dazzling fireworks, live music and DJ, food to die for, following a drinks and snacks reception on the entrance lawn with fountains, a free bar, all to the backdrop of the Mediterranean Sea, made for one hell of a spectacular Lebanese wedding bash.

Thanks so much to D&M for inviting MB to your special day. He enjoyed it immensely.

Shukran jazilan!

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (5)


The Wedding Ceremony.

As MB has already mentioned, the wedding ceremony of D&M took place in the Christian Maronite Church of St Jean Marc in Byblos, which is part of the modern day Lebanese town of Jbail. MB’s previous Lebanese wedding experience in December 2016 witnessed a Christian Orthodox ceremony in which the bride and groom do not utter a single word throughout. There was no “I do”. But, for the information of those who may not know, the Maronite Church is a branch of the Roman Catholic church, so the ceremony on Sunday last was similar in most respects to a Catholic Church wedding in Ireland – but no pictures of St Patrick were evident!

Anyway, the church interior and its floral decoration were stunning, as followers can see:

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (7)


Time for Desert!

MB spent 2 full days in Lebanon, one of which was spent at the wedding of D&M, and 2 part days travelling to & from. He returned to Qatar some 3 kilos heavier than when he departed. It’s not difficult to see why:

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (6)


Feeding Time.

Weddings are tough work. For the participants and guests alike. The food can not come soon enough for most. And on the occasion of D&M’s wedding, MB can assure followers that the food was mouthwateringly delicious and amazing!

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (4)


The Bride Arrives.

Nobody cares about the groom. Any groom. In any country. Except maybe his mom. He just arrives as early as he can with his best man in tow and prays that half of those invited actually show up. He prays even harder that the bride will show up. Inshallah she will!

But when the bride arrives, that’s when the excitement starts……..

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (3)


The Guests Arrive (2 of 2).

And they just kept arriving………..

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (2)


The Guests Arrive (1 of 2).

MB lodged himself just inside the church entrance under some foliage to protect his follically-challenged head from the warm August rays. He had arrived at the church grounds some 30 minutes before the wedding ceremony was to take place to capture the location and the guests as they arrived. Despite wearing an open-neck shirt, minus any tie, it was still perspiration weather due to Jbail’s summer humidity, a consequence of its juxtaposition next to the adjacent sea.

And so the guests arrive:

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The Wedding of David & Myriam (1)


The Church.

MB mentioned in a recent post that he was again amongst the Lebanese for the wedding of a work colleague. The ceremony took place on Sunday last in the 900-year-old Christian Maronite Church of St Jean Marc in Byblos, in the modern-day town of Jbail, Jbail being situated on the Lebanese coastal highway approximately one hours drive north of Beirut. The beautiful old stone-cut church lies in the port area of the ancient habitation, next to the Crusader Castle which was built around the same time.

The church was constructed in the year 1115 AD, according to MB’s research, as the Cathedral of St John the Baptist, and is today dedicated to St John Mark, the patron saint of Jbail. It is thought that St JM was the founder of the first Christian community in the locality.

As a location for a wedding ceremony, perfect!

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Sunday Shot – No Comment