As I was writing about hookahs last month, I began to think about one of the other things that I miss about Palestine. Taybeh Dark. It really is an absolutely amazing beer. We’ve been drinking some good Jamaican Red Stripe around the Walker Cleaveland home recently, which I really like.
But…it’s nothing compared to Taybeh Dark. Has anyone else ever had it? The Light isn’t bad, but it’s really the Dark that is just heavenly.
During the summer of 2005 when I was in Palestine, we would often end our evenings at al-Hema (The Tent), an open-air Bedouin-styled restaurant just outside of Bethlehem in Beit Sahour. We would get barbecue, hookahs (two apples was always the best) and Taybeh Dark and sit around with either our group or a group of Palestinians we hung out with and enjoy our evenings.
You can read a little about the Taybeh Brewing Company here (though it’s an older article, written during the Palestinian Intifada of 2002).
I am excited for when I can return to Palestine (with Sarah this time) and get out to Taybeh. It’s funny how sometimes it takes things like hookahs and beer to help us remember…but it makes sense – those very tangible things like sounds and smells and tastes that make a place that feels so far away seem so real and close. It’s always amazing to me how a far-off place can find such a way into one’s heart, after only spending a few months there. It is a place that I need to pray for much more than I do, a place filled with great friends (Wasim, Rami, Georgette, Saliba, Nidal and so many others), a place filled with so much sorrow and grief – but a place filled with so much beauty.
Thanks Taybeh, for the good times and the chance to remember…