“Keep walking down the straight road; once you come across a ‘bizarre’ building on your right, this is the Issam Faris Institute.”
I am here, standing at the main gate of the American University of Beirut, listening to the answer of the security man with his gentle Lebanese accent. I asked him to show me the way to the Issam Faris Institute during my first visit.
I walked along the straight way and the adjective “bizarre” was stuck in my mind!
How can a building be “bizarre” among those straw-colored constructions crowned with dark bricks to furnish the place with a noble, elegant soul!
In addition to the unique site of the university that has a marvelous view on the Mediterranean Sea, it can make someone feel like a pretty princess sleeping peacefully on the sea’s shoulder and creates a heart-touching music fading all dissonant tunes, preventing them from being “Bizarre” and then disrupt its harmony.
And there I was, walking while thinking when a visual storm abruptly came to my eyes… Suddenly there was a change from the monotonous images I was seeing and my eyes were focused on this glorious banner. Hovering in front of the space, challenging its mute stagnancy!
It delivers a clear message that “the Bizarreness” has its “existence” prestige approaches to that of “heritage” and even emulates it sometimes.
I felt her soft spirit flying over the wide space that she challenged, which make me rush to my phone googling with swift touches …
When her name emerged, it was as vivid and majestic just like her designs and it confirmed my anticipations.
She is, the one who said being an Arab, and a woman . It is like a double-edged sword. The moment my woman-ness is accepted, the Arab-ness seems to become a problem!
She taught me how a human can be immortal even after his or her body dies.
She also taught me how being a woman I have to have my own double edged sword. One edge for underestimation stereotyping and the other, to defeat all challenges.