Nov 6, 2012

Car Free Day - Rmeil

I loved the area span of the event's location: A long street (Kataeb street as locals call it) filled with merchandise stands on the sides, two platforms, one at the end (for sporting activities) and one at the middle where bands were playing and various activities were held throughout the day.

Gymnasts performing in the center of the crowd
I first headed to the "Jesuites Park", first thing that catches your eye once you step foot in Rmeil, where I was supposed to meet with the rest of the free huggers to start our last flashmob for this year. Good thing we chose the car free day for our flashmob, the whole ambiance of joy and calamity, the positive vibes in the air and the whole serenity of the place gave us that push we needed to withstand the whole 6 hours with a smile on our face the whole time.
"Le Jardin des Jesuites" has turned into the children's playground
Clowns, Clowns Everywhere
Children and toddlers were filling the park, while two young guys and a teenager girl were spending the time with the infants singing, dancing, shouting out loud, skipping around, face-painting and many more activities on plan. The event also held a venue for a photography exhibition. Donner Sang Compter were also there with their usual stand and their lovely staff and volunteers (note on the side: this might be the third time I bump into DSC's stand and would really want to have a few minutes with the guys there, but then I'd be distracted the whole day with the activity I'm doing). Skate.LB skateboarding organization filled the afternoon with such an outstanding performance, along with Sastek the bicycle hero and his exceptional show.

Preparing the Free Hugs Signs
This amazing woman remembered us from the previous car free day and asked to hug us all, one by one

As usual, I was personally fully indulged in the Free Hugs flashmob, having no time to check the outskirted side shows. Fortunately for me though I managed to have a few minutes at the end of the day, right when the band was finishing their gig and the skateboard show was about to start. At the same time, jugglers were performing, gymnasts doing their part, kiosks all around selling everything from organic food to hats and wearables. It was the perfect time for me to start snapping some photos.

Sastek the Bicycle Hero
one of the SkateLB skaters performing
Eventually, what had crossed my mind at the end of that day, and the last sassine car free day as well, was the insurmountable contrast between the span and diversity of Achrafieh2020's car free events compared to the one held in Tripoli last year, where it took over the whole city in general, witnessed extremely large numbers of participating bands/shows/performers along with a huge pedestrian presence, leaving me with the only thought of hoping to bring back this country "golden era" it needs, where everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, lived there harmonically away from all conflicts and disruptions. The looks on the faces of the people we hugged showed me once more how much peace and serenity are needed in our lovely country. God bless everyone who made that day a success

you can check more relevant photos on both my Facebook Album, on the Free Huggers Album and the Achrafieh2020 FB Page
Reine among the bubbles
One of my personal favorites
And old woman, apparently looking lusciously at the young performer ahead.


  1. You should add a like button there! I wish Tripoli could get some of those positive vibes! Well done Natheer...

  2. oh hi :D I wish i knew how to add one! and btw the Tripoli car free was postponed till next spring. such a shame. These events are nothing compared to what happened in Tripoli. But meh, we had a lovely time at least, and this gives you a slight push in your faith in humanity.