I was often asked after leaving Lebanon for good: “if you love it so much, why did you leave it?”, “if it is that beautiful why aren’t you there?”
But when I remember what drove me out, it was not really the war, not the seeking of adventure, not my love for travel, no, it was something much simpler than that.
I could never be ‘me’ in my home country. It is a society that allows you to speak as long as what you say conforms to popular opinion. It lets you do as long as you do what is politically correct. What drove me out was my search for truth and my strong longing to be myself, to be true to who I am and to find out who I was. And who can do that except under the wings of freedom? How can you find yourself if you are imprisoned in dogma?
And still, years later, if you ask me where I wish to grow old, I would answer: ” Lebanon, where else?”