August 14th, 2013
while in montreal, we came across these non-smoking signs which were new to us, forbidding smoking as far as 9 meters from any building entrance - the trick is, you can't read the sign 9 meters away, so if you're a smoker you have to violate the instructions until you reach the reading distance, then walk back and ditch whatever you are smoking - nevertheless, it is interesting to see how seriously canada takes this issue, it seems people carry with them smoking odor as they enter buildings and 9 meters seem the perfect distance to avoid that.
when i think about people in this region who walk into elevators and instantly light a cigarette!!
August 13th, 2013
one of the most amazing burger you can ever taste is 5 guys burger! we finally had the chance to try it in montreal and trust me the burger lives up to its reputation!
the place is simple, not too fancy but a branding so focused on red and white checkered and good pr or press releases stuck all over the restaurant - wherever you look there is an article on how great the burger joint is, or how many awards it has won.
the burger itself is very juicy and let me say nasty, it is not a light meal, do not expect that! the fries are so amazing and they are so generous we had 3 times the fries we ordered for free... how is that? they simply dumped the stock of fries they had in the container, on top of the fried cups... we couldn't finish half of it.
the joint also offers bulk peanuts, it is self-served and you can have as much as you want, just don't fill your stomach with nuts as what comes after is so awesome!
the bill was a fat as the burger, 80 dollars for 4 persons, that is not cheap! hope to see 5 burgers in town, we heard lots of rumors about having one in kuwait but so far it is still a mirage.
August 11th, 2013
we're finally back to beirut yesterday from a long & exhausting trip to canada and france - while my husband will travel to kuwait today, our vacation with the kids will continue in beirut for a few more days.
meanwhile, we'll be posting some stories from our trip along some new ones, we apologies for this break but it was much-needed.
you probably saw this picture as we posted it on instagram a few days ago - we bumped into this smart bum on st catherine street in downtown montreal, he's funny and always smiling and kind of honest :) it's a creative way to ask for money and it worked, very different from the street beggars you find on the champs elysees, see picture below.
this is a very unpleasant way to ask for money, somehow the funny, self-criticizing way works best for us - beside, the beggars on the champs elysees seem to be organized in gangs, we spotted them at a meeting point splitting the goods.
feels good to be back, we'll post more news shortly.
August 5th, 2013
while strolling down the st catherine street in montreal, we came across this awesome looking tex-mex restaurant called 3 amigos - we went in and ordered some tacos and fajita - the food was very good, not too different from tgi fridays though, a bit better but with much more pleasant atmosphere - what sucks is the service, they are simply clueless! like for instance they will bring you the desert after cleaning up the table and forget to bring cutlery, and you wait and wait and nothing happens until you raise the issue - unless they expect you to consume your food by hand! the bill took some time to be ready too, so we were not happy about the overall service.
the desert was awesome for that matter, we had rollo de manzana (sort of an apple pie), it really rocked! the best thing at 3 amigos is the bill, we had a full lunch with desert for 69 can $, including beer - lentil soup and nachos are complementary.
so if you happen to be in montreal, we would recommend you try 3 amigos, it is worth the buck and delicious too - you'll have to compromise on the service but that's ok.
August 1st, 2013
well, you might expect to see some beautiful pictures of canada, but for me, first things first! my favorite chocolate bar takes always a priority, meet mr. big.
mr. big is cadbury's biggest chocolate bar, it's around 20 centimeters in length and made of a long layered vanilla wafer coated in caramel, peanuts and rice crisps, covered in chocolate - it is the yummist of the yummyest, but unfortunately it is not available globally except in a few countries, one of which is canada where it is found in every convenient store - actually, the ice cream bar is only available in canada and has been discontinued everywhere else.
if you happen to visit canada, don't forget mr big!
July 29th, 2013
the first leg of our trip has finally ended and we have reached montreal safe and sound - it has been quite eventful though, personally my trip from kuwait to beirut saw some awesome discoveries - imagine that after a last-minute upgrade to business class, i find myself sitting next to someone i know, but minutes later i discover that he was living in montreal back in 93 when i was there, and not far from my place - he was in my bother's university and the big chock came when i discovered that he was at school with me in beirut when we were young, and in the same class!
beirut-paris was flawless, until we landed in charles de gaulle airport - the plane stopped and we were ordered to sit put for 20 minutes until the plane is taxied! never been in this situation before, quite frustrating.. once the 20 were over, we stood for another 10 waiting for the door to open! i hate that, especially after a long flight - the cream on top was an hour and a half delay on top of the 5 hours wait at charles de gaulle.. the trip to montreal started on a bad note!
we finally boarded around 7:30 to the new-found land and some how the 6 hours 45 minutes trip felt like ages - i am not sure why it used to feel shorter, maybe because the last time i visited canada was 15 years ago, i was much younger then..
overall, the trip was looooooooooooong! and to add insult to injury we were imposed a thorough check-up at montreal's airport which further delayed our arrival to the hotel.
it was no surprise to discover that our limo driver was lebanese, however he comes from the same area we live at in beirut and he also lived in kuwait for quite some time too! what are the odds??!!
we're finally at our hotel, trying to adjust to the new timing - i wonder what the coming days are hiding...
July 25th, 2013
it's vacation time and this time we're going far far away to the land of the maple leaf - personally i'm very excited as it's been 15 years since i last visited montreal, i can't wait! our main objective is to visit mcgill university and take a campus tour as our son might join in a couple of years - our to do list is so long i am not sure what we'll end-up doing..
paris is next after montreal, we won't stay long just a handful of days - we'll be posting from montreal starting sunday so stay tuned.
July 24th, 2013
i've been watching some weird movies lately, all classic, old and highly rated as masterpieces and hailed by critics - these movies can either blow your mind away, or bore you to death like this supposedly "most influential movie ever made" called "last year at marienbad".
the story is ridiculous, imagine that it is about a guy who is trying to convince a woman that he had seen her last year at the same castle, marienbad! but you can't imagine the agony you have to go through this movie as it is mostly narrative, in black and white, though in 61 they could have simply made it in color - but alain resnais, the director, wanted to experiment with this one so he goes wild into a non linear story where imagination and reality become hard to define.
the best review i've read goes something like that: I think everyone should see this film. I don't know why. I have seen it numerous times. No, I have never seen it. Yes, I saw it last year! No, last year I did not see it. Yes, I saw it here, with me. Wait, I'm alone. Who am I talking to?
the lead actress in this movie is delphine seyrig, she died back in 1990, while checking her profile i discovered that she was actually born in beirut!
anyways, if you ever come across this movie i advise you not to see an hour and a half of your life go to waste!
July 23rd, 2013
i've been in kuwait for 13 years but i've never had the chance to taste a tashriba, until a couple of days ago when i was invited for an iftar and had traditional kuwaiti food.
tashriba is like a must have dish during ramadan and comes in different flavors and ways - tashriba can be served with chicken, meat, vegetables like potatoes, pumpkin etc.. or plain - the one i had was plain, it comes with bread and none of the previous ingredients, a bit spicy but just right.
there are different ways to cook a tashriba, the best thing is to google it, you can also find various images here.
glad i tried this one out, looking forward for more.
July 22nd, 2013
when i was in egypt a few weeks back, i visited my favorite egyptian restaurant, abouelsid in zamalek - the food is even better than ever before and the place is still awesome! i love every detail in this place, even the tiles as you can see in the below picture gallery - it is the best egyptian food experience you can ever have, across the globe i would say.
i asked the manager if abouelsid is coming to kuwait and he confirmed, he even specified the place, sultan mall!! i told him here is no sultan mall in kuwait, but he insisted saying it is by the sea - so i guess he was referring to sultan center restaurant or sultan complex on gulf road, but i got very suspicious when he said it will be in the coming weeks.
this is not the first time we hear such rumors, i hope this will materialize and this great restaurant finally opens in kuwait.
July 21st, 2013
though i am in beirut relaxing, a friend sent me this press release which appeared in alqabas last wednesday and asked me to check the video on youtube - at first i wondered what was wrong, i watched the video twice but i did not notice anything, but then it strikes me, the number of views was a far cry from what was communicated in the press release, the number were somewhere between 10,000 and 13,000 and not 90,000!!
anyway, i gave the subject a few days and visited kfh's youtube channel again yesterday, but the number of views was still on a different planet, 15159 as scene in the snapshot below.
what's ironic is that the press release talks about the bank wanting to forge a relation of trust with its customers during the holy month of ramadan! i guess the first step towards that goal is to be transparent with the customers and the public at large, when it comes to the social media conversions.
any other explanation on this? i am quite puzzled! you can check the video here.
update: kfh was referring to humood alkhudher's youtube channel and not the bank's - that page has the numbers right, you can check the video here.
thanks for the update waleed.
July 18th, 2013
back in march, alnowair was launched in an awesome creative & fresh way - alnowair's objective is to bring positivity back to kuwait, and it seems that the spreading is carrying on beautifully, this time with a new theme, i thank.
i thank is a simple, yet brilliant idea, it simply asks people to write what they are thankful for on a post it and stick it on a wall - this is going on in marina mall, so if you happen to be there just pass by the bridge and leave some positivity trails behind :)
great job alnowair and marina mall - it's great to see positivity spreading in malls as lately stabbings and killings made the boldest headlines, spreading fear and anxiety.