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Libya: From Funerals to Weddings

Categories: Middle East & North Africa, Libya, Development, Health, Ideas, Migration & Immigration, Technology, Women & Gender, Youth

It's been difficult to pinpoint what the Libyan blogosphere has been discussing in the past months since the Gaza bombings [1].

This is because many of the more known bloggers have been on a bit of Winter hiatus. However, the good thing about the Libyan blogs is despite its relevant modesty, there is always a new crop coming out. As a reader, it takes me a bit of time to adjust but then I learn to appreciate the new blogs and the fresh perspectives.

In this regard, I've been touring the Libyan blogs for the last couple of weeks hunting for those voices and stories of interest. The only common line sometimes would be that the author is Libyan or lives in Libya.

American (living in Libya) blogger On the Edge recently wrote about miscellaneous events but the most heart wrenching part from her post was the passing away of the family cousin as a result of medical malpractice in Libya [2].

“The second funeral was for a well loved cousin .This was over the week end and up until today it continues .She had asthma and was ill with it off and on but we all knew this . Sometimes she would have to be hospitalized for treatment but never for long .On days like we had last week when it was so dusty , it was hard for her to breath. Sometimes this lead to a chest infection , which is what had happened to her last week .
She was feeling bad and having breathing difficulty's and felt the need to go see the doctor . She did and he told her she had a chest infection that needed a injection of anti biotic”s to give her immediate relief , along with a breathing treatment . She said ok , but I can't have penicillin . I am allergic to it . When the injection came she asked what the medicine was and was told it was penicillin . She told them not to give it to her because of her allergies and they told her not to worry about it . She argued with them over it but they gave it to her anyway .[sic]”

Khadijateri, another American blogger married to a Libyan, is asking for feedback on the newly released WiMax internet service [3]. She received a lot of tips in the comment section.

“I ‘ve been watching the news about Libya's Wimax Internet. It opened to the general public a few months ago but I only know one person that paid for a subscription and modem only to find that there was no reception where they lived (not far from Tripoli's city centre).”

It is worth noting Libya is another country which has taken the step to deploy WiMax [4] to provide internet users with another choice and bypass infrastructure difficulties.

Shahrazad is a new female Libyan blogger, who has been working as a tour guide but is looking into changing her profession. Shahrazad has two blogs Shahrazad's Blahs [5] and Shahrazad's secret recipe [6]s, which is self explanatory.

In her latest post Shahrazad takes us on a tour of the souk [market] in Tripoli [7]and we are regaled by her photos, which trigger a trip down memory lane for her readers.

“The souk is a favourite place of mine and I enjoy shopping for old Libyan and Italian silver things-from trays to jewelery. “

Anglolibyan has been invited to a screening of a documentary Autumn Thunder about Libya by Prince Mohammed Alsenussi, a son of the nephew of the deposed late King Idris of Libya [8]. During the event which took place in London he managed to meet up not only with the dashing prince and some friends but also with another Libyan blogger going by the name of Braveheart [9].

Though Autumn Thunder as described deals with the usual issues presented by exiled monarchies it made a good launchpad for discussion about the various merits of changes undertaken in Libya since independence.

The recent celebration of Mother's Day ( March 21) in the MENA region and especially in the Arab speaking world has brought its spate of posts for the occasion. This is especially true for Libya since we celebrate Children's Day on March 20 and so the two events are always linked.

While there were numerous posts for the occasion the most touching is again by one new member of the Libyan blogosphere. Lolita from Lolita's Corner [10] writes:

” The mother in me
Tried all I could
But to no avail
To hear little footsteps
Running and giggling away
Dreams and wishes are just that
But reality is a different showcase
Which I have to face and hopefully accept”

Lolita's melancholic poetry style goes straight to the heart and seems to be a coping mechanism to help with the loss of her parents and also to exorcise lost love. Additionally we learn that she is unable to have children, which is of course doubly sad on mother's day.

Safia's latest reincarnation on the blogs goes by the name of LadyCroc's Lounge [11]. Her posts on any topic, including the latest one [12], are always questioning, quasi metaphysical with a sprinkling of sufism denote an inner search for the truth and for peace.

“There are indeed moments of bliss. During such moments I can truly feel the rainbow touching my heart. Those are the moments of mercy.
A few days ago I felt such a moment. My biggest wish in such a moment is to have the ability to kill time instantly, or just to freeze everything, continuing forever and ever in that short moment. These are moments of strenght for me, reviving my soul like hot spring rain reviving frozen buds buried in the cold soil of winter.
Allahs mercy, even if just short of an eyedrop, is truly eternal!”

Luna also is a recent addition to the Libyan family, she is giving away her two daughters in marriage very soon and has stepped into a hornet nest recently with her topic on relationships between Libyan men and educated smart Libyan women. [13]

“When discussing this issue with my girlfriends many which are multicultural ,some married to Libyans others divorced, we came to a conclusion that men in general , but especially Libyan men, seem to thoughroghly enjoy the intelligence of women ,in everyday co working relationships, while discussing current or past issues- but at the end of the day, that they settle for the stupid ones when marrying , to make them feel grand machos! [sic]”.

This were just a few of the varied topics being discussed in the Libyan space.