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Webmaster Notes...

by Anwar Kenicer

Here is a history of our usage according to our server's data:

Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005 -Important Totals

Item Accesses Bytes Visits Charts
Overall Accesses 962,709 12,354,837,359 15,687 View Chart
Home Page Accesses 1,234 20,507,384 849 View Chart

Executive Summary

The web site received 15,687 visits. A typical visitor examined 35.42 documents before leaving the site. A typical visit lasted for 16.57 minutes. The longest visit lasted for 1,438 minutes.

Visitors came from 8,833 distinct Internet addresses.

The web server delivered 43,409 unique documents one or more times each.

29 distinct types of documents were delivered.

4 distinct Internet web sites were accessed via the proxy server.

There were 959 requests for documents which did not exist on the web server. The web server was linked to by 1 distinct pages on other web servers.

0 distinct Internet search servers were used to reach the site.

Visitors followed a total of 6,626 distinct, non-trivial "trails" among the documents found on the web server.


Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005: Traffic by Day

Date Accesses % Bytes % Visits % Bits per Sec Bytes per Sec
10/30/2005 80,693 8.38 748,383,865 6.06 3,497 11.38 69,294.80 8,661.85
10/31/2005 176,986 18.38 1,899,788,710 15.38 4,934 16.05 175,906.36 21,988.30
11/1/2005 143,104 14.86 1,555,152,480 12.59 4,787 15.58 143,995.60 17,999.45
11/2/2005 116,978 12.15 1,492,890,371 12.08 5,470 17.80 138,230.59 17,278.82
11/3/2005 138,041 14.34 1,983,883,382 16.06 4,630 15.06 183,692.91 22,961.61
11/4/2005 154,491 16.05 2,180,363,937 17.65 4,030 13.11 201,885.55 25,235.69
11/5/2005 152,416 15.83 2,494,374,614 20.19 3,387 11.02 230,960.61 28,870.08

Top 50 of 8,833 Visitor Sites

Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005: 

Sorted by Access Count


Rank Site Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 354,881 36.86 6,732,040,077 54.49 61 0.39
2 38,821 4.03 719,095,863 5.82 16 0.10
3 adsl-70-240-224-40.dsl.hstntx.swbell.net 12,916 1.34 65,860,826 0.53 11 0.07
4 crawl-66-249-72-71.googlebot.com 5,815 0.60 209,671,625 1.70 11 0.07
5 ppp-71-138-119-173.dsl.irvnca.pacbell.net 4,272 0.44 9,951,712 0.08 1 0.01
6 chello084113011081.7.12.vie.surfer.at 3,868 0.40 22,225,638 0.18 1 0.01
7 3,657 0.38 32,722,809 0.26 39 0.25
8 3,543 0.37 115,275,146 0.93 3 0.02
9 mail.tusuka.com 3,342 0.35 37,060,289 0.30 2 0.01
10 egspd42032.teoma.com 3,318 0.34 21,038,183 0.17 5 0.03
11 adsl-68-89-190-73.dsl.hstntx.swbell.net 3,276 0.34 11,745,185 0.10 1 0.01
12 adsl-70-240-225-81.dsl.hstntx.swbell.net 3,023 0.31 12,858,781 0.10 2 0.01
13 81-202-233-182.user.ono.com 2,856 0.30 12,115,857 0.10 2 0.01
14 bny93-2-82-224-111-69.fbx.proxad.net 2,712 0.28 19,027,080 0.15 18 0.12
15 ip-209-172-35-48.reverse.privatedns.com 2,706 0.28 46,611,497 0.38 14 0.09
16 2,601 0.27 22,121,472 0.18 10 0.07
17 ip168-243-88-46.saltel.net 2,448 0.25 22,614,672 0.18 48 0.31
18 Adsl-196-201-74-116.aviso.ci 2,291 0.24 16,258,754 0.13 2 0.01
19 px2ht.ok.shawcable.net 2,181 0.23 6,718,633 0.05 2 0.01
20 cpe-204-210-134-35.hvc.res.rr.com 2,154 0.22 12,126,472 0.10 5 0.03
21 rrcs-24-173-6-206.sw.biz.rr.com 1,954 0.20 20,884,345 0.17 1 0.01
22 crawl-66-249-72-6.googlebot.com 1,937 0.20 29,705,581 0.24 2 0.01
23 msnbot.msn.com 1,902 0.20 32,718,575 0.26 109 0.70
24 1,892 0.20 15,242,525 0.12 1 0.01
25 cpe-066-026-047-223.nc.res.rr.com 1,875 0.19 12,736,578 0.10 1 0.01
26 1,871 0.19 16,758,081 0.14 27 0.18
27 ool-457afc2e.dyn.optonline.net 1,839 0.19 6,112,139 0.05 1 0.01
28 1,819 0.19 14,103,052 0.11 2 0.01
29 1,791 0.19 15,585,615 0.13 34 0.22
30 BRF-CE04-G2-0.tm.net.my 1,778 0.18 20,364,423 0.16 67 0.43
31 1,774 0.18 8,221,309 0.07 3 0.02
32 1,702 0.18 6,884,132 0.06 28 0.18
33 c-24-6-19-150.hsd1.ca.comcast.net 1,645 0.17 11,781,967 0.10 1 0.01
34 internet3.irs.gov 1,572 0.16 5,823,600 0.05 1 0.01
35 MTL-ppp-156321.qc.sympatico.ca 1,526 0.16 10,330,659 0.08 2 0.01
36 adsl-70-240-232-239.dsl.hstntx.swbell.net 1,523 0.16 5,909,081 0.05 1 0.01
37 1,509 0.16 13,776,056 0.11 72 0.46
38 va-sterling-u1-c5c-a-190.chvlva.adelphia.net 1,455 0.15 5,805,269 0.05 1 0.01
39 smtp-fiber.aub.edu.lb 1,454 0.15 5,605,877 0.05 10 0.07
40 adsl-69-216-249-46.dsl.chcgil.ameritech.net 1,440 0.15 10,597,010 0.09 1 0.01
41 ip-85-160-15-146.eurotel.cz 1,437 0.15 8,836,666 0.07 1 0.01
42 adsl-68-121-32-155.dsl.irvnca.pacbell.net 1,434 0.15 10,108,435 0.08 2 0.01
43 APuteaux-151-1-67-188.w81-249.abo.wanadoo.fr 1,430 0.15 6,852,187 0.06 2 0.01
44 1,421 0.15 13,048,978 0.11 17 0.11
45 1,408 0.15 13,278,385 0.11 80 0.51
46 kl-tre-fec2dd00-172.dhcp.inet.fi 1,403 0.15 8,803,426 0.07 1 0.01
47 66-159-137-102.adsl.snet.net 1,393 0.14 9,208,636 0.07 4 0.03
48 1,382 0.14 8,028,440 0.06 2 0.01
49 kl-tre-fe48dd00-208.dhcp.inet.fi 1,376 0.14 5,101,957 0.04 1 0.01
50 CPE001111b42b41-CM0012c99c5f38.cpe.net.cable.rogers.com 1,366 0.14 7,966,913 0.06 5 0.03



Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005: Top 10 of 38 Visitor Domains

Sorted by Access Count

Rank Domain Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 UNKNOWN 543,989 56.51 8,704,829,492 70.46 6,724 42.87
2 net 172,680 17.94 1,129,701,462 9.14 2,673 17.04
3 com 97,832 10.16 1,179,408,893 9.55 2,672 17.04
4 europe 64,993 6.75 781,550,362 6.33 1,208 7.71
5 namerica 19,853 2.06 120,771,594 0.98 288 1.84
6 asia 18,731 1.95 156,907,777 1.27 1,116 7.12
7 africa 11,769 1.22 79,979,120 0.65 140 0.90
8 edu 7,377 0.77 41,499,922 0.34 73 0.47
9 australia 6,176 0.64 36,784,814 0.30 82 0.52
10 samerica 4,792 0.50 31,894,459 0.26 289 1.84


Week of 11/13/2005 to 11/19/2005: Traffic by Hour

Figures are averages for that hour of each day in the time period analyzed.


Documents Report - Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005

Objects by Type - Sorted by Access Count

Top 10 of 31,072 Web Pages

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 / 1,234 0.13 20,507,384 0.17 850 0.15
2 /_vti_bin/fpcount.exe/?Page=default.htm|Image=4|Digits=7 926 0.10 793,149 0.01 734 0.13
3 /shweir_news.htm 808 0.08 118,984,535 0.96 194 0.03
4 /bbs/messages/1.html 670 0.07 5,628,228 0.05 115 0.02
5 /Shweir_photos.htm 591 0.06 50,473,704 0.41 178 0.03
6 /bbs/messages/34.html 590 0.06 18,666,365 0.15 121 0.02
7 /bbs/messages/5.html 587 0.06 4,248,333 0.03 102 0.02
8 /bbs/messages/18.html 566 0.06 3,587,250 0.03 103 0.02
9 /bbs/messages/971.html 565 0.06 11,860,338 0.10 114 0.02
10 /bbs/messages/3.html 563 0.06 3,485,723 0.03 73 0.01

Top 1 of 1 Images

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 /new_zealand_files/image003.png 19 0.00 630,990 0.01 7 0.00


Top 3 of 3 Audio

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 /shweirfw/firework.au 3 0.00 17,316 0.00 3 0.00
2 /shweirfw/syu.au 3 0.00 1,311 0.00 3 0.00
3 /beerfest2003/dhour shweir.mp3 2 0.00 102,894 0.00 1 0.00


Top 1 of 1 Java and ActiveX Binaries

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 /shweirfw/jhanabi.class 3 0.00 16,308 0.00 3 0.00


Top 10 of 8,246 Additional Objects

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 /Images_8/pray.JPG 911 0.09 24,609,248 0.20 22 0.00
2 /Images 22/P1010730.JPG 832 0.09 14,042,201 0.11 736 0.13
3 /images/flag_of_Lebanon.JPG 688 0.07 17,776,487 0.14 78 0.01
4 /images/Shweir_4.JPG 531 0.06 10,091,152 0.08 498 0.09
5 /Images11/Bus from Ras Beirut.JPG 334 0.03 10,655,501 0.09 39 0.01
6 /Images 22/P1010592_small.JPG 255 0.03 596,472 0.00 100 0.02
7 /Images 22/P1010602_small.JPG 250 0.03 664,656 0.01 100 0.02
8 /Images 22/P1010586_small.JPG 243 0.03 655,160 0.01 99 0.02
9 /Images 22/P1010590_small.JPG 236 0.02 600,447 0.00 99 0.02
10 /Images 22/P1010591_small.JPG 233 0.02 625,800 0.01 97 0.02


Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005: Top 10 of 5935 Entry Pages

Sorted by Entry Count - Visits typically began at these pages.

Rank Entry Page Entry Count %
1 / 716 5.45
2 /miss_emigrant_2003.htm 267 2.03
3 /texas.htm 182 1.38
4 /california.htm 179 1.36
5 /beer_fest_2004.htm 172 1.31
6 /announcements.htm 136 1.03
7 /family_tree.htm 122 0.93
8 /jokes.htm 119 0.91
9 /art_and_poetry.htm 109 0.83
10 /in_memory_of.htm 108 0.82




Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005: Top 10 of 5824 Exit Pages

Sorted by Exit Count - Visits typically ended at these pages

Rank Exit Page Exit Count %
1 /_vti_bin/fpcount.exe/?Page=default.htm|Image=4|Digits=7 456 3.47
2 /miss_emigrant_2003.htm 255 1.94
3 /texas.htm 191 1.45
4 /california.htm 183 1.39
5 /beer_fest_2004.htm 163 1.24
6 /in_memory_of.htm 158 1.20
7 /announcements.htm 139 1.06
8 / 135 1.03
9 /family_tree.htm 132 1.00
10 /jokes.htm 122 0.93



Directories Report

Week of 10/30/2005 to 11/5/2005

See the "web pages" section for links to subdirectories.

/ : Objects by Type

Sorted by Access Count

Top 10 of 317 Web Pages

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 [ /bbs ] 488,409 50.88 8,423,231,051 68.44 9,611 61.55
2 [ /_derived ] 159,295 16.59 96,818,234 0.79 3,962 25.38
3 [ /images ] 35,296 3.68 217,929,893 1.77 2,163 13.85
4 /Images 22 29,555 3.08 328,157,419 2.67 1,142 7.32
5 /Images 1 23,749 2.47 124,468,519 1.01 1,174 7.52
6 /Images 4 23,030 2.40 136,315,200 1.11 1,185 7.59
7 /Images 2 20,381 2.12 145,645,467 1.18 3,199 20.49
8 [ /Images_6 ] 20,046 2.09 147,822,892 1.20 768 4.92
9 [ /ubb ] 17,598 1.83 3,755,813 0.03 1,797 11.51
10 [ /Images14 ] 13,819 1.44 146,362,843 1.19 397 2.54


Top 10 of 45 Additional Objects

Rank Item Accesses % Bytes % Visits %
1 /default.inc.css 71 0.01 260,890 0.00 69 0.45
2 /lebanon-misc.htm#Christina Sawaya, Crowned Miss Internation
10 0.00 3,363,790 0.03 10 0.07
3 /books.htm#brahim Mitri Rihbany 8 0.00 1,736,800 0.01 7 0.05
4 /Eid M 2002.htm#Miss Teenager 2002 3 0.00 389,688 0.00 3 0.02
5 /prayer.htm#INTRODUCTORY PRAYERS 3 0.00 335,658 0.00 3 0.02
6 /art_and_poetry.htm#Nassam Alaina Al Hawa 3 0.00 42,663 0.00 1 0.01
7 /contacts.htm#Welcome 3 0.00 167,679 0.00 3 0.02
8 /meet_our_youth.htm#Miss Teenage Beauty Pageant - August 200
3 0.00 243,447 0.00 3 0.02
9 /texas.htm#Shweir on the Beach 2000 3 0.00 470,301 0.00 3 0.02
10 /education.htm#Cornerstone for the Library 2 0.00 359,004 0.00 2 0.01


History from 5/19/2002 to 11/19/2005 - Historical Totals

Values for completed time periods are final. Values for the reporting period currently in progress are projections, except for user-calculated functions, which are not scaled.
Overall Accesses
Overall Accesses
Report Date Accesses Bytes Visits
Total 49,316,064 398,194,095,071 767,743
Average 269,486 2,175,924,016 4,195
Latest 780,964.19 10,836,053,176 13,320
05/19/02 10,146 42,676,529 9
05/26/02 115,342 674,701,021 2,998
06/02/02 106,940 529,114,079 2,500
06/09/02 106,698 593,421,063 2,674
06/16/02 123,434 681,622,605 2,379
06/23/02 135,620 839,520,452 2,679
06/30/02 106,710 565,215,959 2,627
07/07/02 117,460 630,429,251 2,322
07/14/02 112,792 873,276,892 2,655
07/21/02 83,220 645,839,182 2,069
07/28/02 86,166 665,296,028 1,951
08/04/02 87,745 695,365,192 1,993
08/11/02 104,102 780,455,827 1,659
08/18/02 119,409 989,925,982 2,290
08/25/02 101,787 961,706,487 2,368
09/01/02 147,423 1,152,614,405 2,975
09/08/02 147,299 1,266,612,285 2,905
09/15/02 136,182 1,138,881,158 2,497
09/22/02 133,239 1,039,026,558 2,308
09/29/02 164,760 1,414,837,205 2,814
10/06/02 165,281 1,324,868,294 2,721
10/13/02 158,601 1,281,741,498 2,747
10/20/02 146,190 1,147,598,569 2,572
10/27/02 150,312 1,293,417,535 2,970
11/03/02 139,214 1,203,486,393 2,804
11/10/02 151,108 1,296,290,499 3,105
11/17/02 171,362 1,339,461,405 3,234
11/24/02 165,550 1,324,689,278 3,244
12/01/02 159,369 1,380,176,446 3,430
12/08/02 183,346 1,466,471,194 3,297
12/15/02 160,527 1,318,580,656 3,266
12/22/02 115,676 916,431,250 2,512
12/29/02 145,829 1,058,090,226 2,497
01/05/03 142,034 1,101,695,693 3,091
01/12/03 113,650 923,592,739 2,815
01/19/03 118,696 952,375,291 2,995
01/26/03 124,314 1,324,629,945 6,171
02/02/03 115,768 868,845,414 2,777
02/09/03 134,274 1,007,677,029 3,214
02/16/03 160,424 2,019,661,486 5,540
02/23/03 151,595 1,423,178,113 4,109
03/02/03 132,489 1,173,695,940 3,220
03/09/03 110,314 909,236,063 2,705
03/16/03 108,430 858,578,655 2,672
03/23/03 109,172 880,451,007 2,316
03/30/03 111,464 818,888,925 2,836
04/06/03 109,984 779,531,655 2,515
04/13/03 101,117 800,848,052 2,465
04/20/03 128,670 1,023,991,949 2,683
04/27/03 109,602 921,435,405 2,533
05/04/03 128,128 1,008,745,340 2,797
05/11/03 115,157 1,091,522,541 2,591
05/18/03 109,948 933,623,800 2,848
05/25/03 120,048 968,097,460 2,745
06/01/03 120,332 929,390,717 2,650
06/08/03 101,738 874,087,791 2,556
06/15/03 94,134 807,076,551 2,337
06/22/03 78,550 653,005,865 2,132
06/29/03 90,701 828,495,853 2,686
07/06/03 69,899 523,740,775 1,610
07/13/03 100,877 908,193,729 2,379
07/20/03 111,591 1,125,264,582 2,520
07/27/03 138,786 1,346,454,725 3,039
08/03/03 129,350 1,193,913,831 2,554
08/10/03 115,561 1,023,225,692 2,380
08/17/03 121,660 1,050,864,971 2,856
08/24/03 142,604 1,209,150,303 2,673
08/31/03 131,482 1,164,538,555 2,971
09/07/03 131,170 1,259,723,800 3,271
09/14/03 152,757 1,417,000,583 3,116
09/21/03 153,561 1,274,918,969 3,007
09/28/03 135,923 1,285,551,510 3,142
10/05/03 138,497 1,237,690,357 2,875
10/12/03 138,250 1,347,480,007 3,051
10/19/03 157,137 1,698,113,332 3,303
10/26/03 117,431 1,178,578,194 2,882
11/02/03 146,118 1,507,368,687 3,157
11/09/03 140,249 1,485,120,845 3,188
11/16/03 146,405 1,368,939,000 3,058
11/23/03 165,857 1,450,470,417 3,326
11/30/03 160,949 1,364,885,142 3,391
12/07/03 166,865 1,626,184,512 3,361
12/14/03 155,447 1,431,738,137 3,424
12/21/03 142,368 1,311,892,661 3,122
12/28/03 163,121 1,417,363,000 3,409
01/04/04 97,658 865,688,448 2,063
01/11/04 36,565 284,121,103 1,036
01/18/04 34,352 259,423,174 1,085
01/25/04 30,072 253,134,863 1,082
02/01/04 30,496 296,010,847 1,082
02/08/04 36,345 286,872,513 1,259
02/15/04 44,112 307,290,802 1,335
02/22/04 64,567 446,020,831 1,561
02/29/04 49,476 336,531,270 1,343
03/07/04 46,938 326,570,783 1,274
03/14/04 43,823 319,651,652 1,274
03/21/04 45,741 319,366,340 1,306
03/28/04 47,540 355,971,131 1,494
04/04/04 57,830 378,625,189 1,387
04/11/04 47,837 352,770,310 1,347
04/18/04 108,906 709,323,359 1,773
04/25/04 82,325 570,016,387 1,574
05/02/04 61,824 419,271,911 1,499
05/09/04 52,677 363,659,871 1,550
05/16/04 50,702 356,203,084 1,397
05/23/04 43,966 360,606,880 1,340
05/30/04 50,374 420,087,484 1,276
06/06/04 45,529 348,850,847 1,274
06/13/04 49,635 439,785,981 1,356
06/20/04 55,555 383,713,224 1,363
06/27/04 53,166 401,159,643 1,253
07/04/04 54,401 397,471,524 1,315
07/11/04 62,088 423,923,817 1,454
07/18/04 49,327 399,104,107 1,307
07/25/04 56,991 435,613,808 1,356
08/01/04 63,057 582,561,134 1,690
08/08/04 63,079 551,380,623 1,706
08/15/04 56,251 491,459,987 1,667
08/22/04 57,421 437,610,002 1,378
08/29/04 58,498 452,629,358 1,280
09/05/04 47,755 394,170,635 1,296
09/12/04 106,404 519,205,251 1,849
09/19/04 110,318 519,230,092 1,984
09/26/04 257,609 1,790,675,514 3,467
10/03/04 360,899 2,933,102,257 4,903
10/10/04 351,495 3,435,129,694 6,068
10/17/04 336,704 3,001,351,505 6,415
10/24/04 343,634 2,875,523,707 5,740
10/31/04 337,035 2,872,222,847 6,043
11/07/04 388,015 3,384,770,634 6,487
11/14/04 449,867 3,466,438,416 5,050
11/21/04 422,070 3,113,108,319 4,843
11/28/04 425,275 3,214,585,731 4,850
12/05/04 423,437 3,192,699,762 4,616
12/12/04 375,307 2,514,858,464 4,333
12/19/04 371,816 2,489,234,956 4,497
12/26/04 389,039 2,590,939,811 4,546
01/02/05 406,607 2,731,290,452 4,907
01/09/05 421,125 2,945,032,608 4,501
01/16/05 402,033 2,739,199,021 4,902
01/23/05 461,797 3,170,011,527 5,303
01/30/05 475,374 3,340,289,649 5,890
02/06/05 528,142 3,738,166,064 6,171
02/13/05 640,792 4,352,251,741 7,627
02/20/05 512,100 3,352,012,091 5,923
02/27/05 531,554 3,508,391,861 6,578
03/06/05 591,306 3,888,117,794 6,636
03/13/05 587,170 3,665,793,228 7,028
03/20/05 596,406 3,862,368,857 7,382
03/27/05 606,671 4,661,016,760 7,284
04/03/05 546,808 3,761,697,923 6,882
04/10/05 534,419 3,918,021,072 6,298
04/17/05 612,753 4,627,869,839 7,624
04/24/05 629,476 4,899,864,500 7,058
05/01/05 628,621 4,581,221,037 7,603
05/08/05 618,764 5,514,124,440 7,748
05/15/05 694,299 5,083,350,276 8,023
05/22/05 643,012 4,326,724,364 7,426
05/29/05 740,831 4,722,564,394 8,612
06/05/05 735,386 4,721,290,584 9,130
06/12/05 692,932 4,886,451,744 8,510
06/19/05 691,238 5,139,735,816 8,534
06/26/05 583,593 4,377,889,863 7,697
07/03/05 613,116 4,333,711,577 6,849
07/10/05 576,520 4,182,380,535 6,729
07/17/05 669,018 4,783,185,376 7,958
07/24/05 724,293 5,416,531,843 7,899
07/31/05 657,316 5,363,085,841 7,917
08/07/05 676,290 5,899,677,259 8,378
08/14/05 715,612 5,451,266,667 9,692
08/21/05 864,549 6,790,438,756 11,271
08/28/05 753,788 5,581,164,335 10,946
09/04/05 821,511 6,396,765,110 11,540
09/11/05 869,746 6,332,424,429 12,503
09/18/05 1,101,644 7,492,469,123 14,413
09/25/05 991,777 8,404,172,994 13,053
10/02/05 762,794 7,284,897,592 13,513
10/09/05 1,740,354 19,761,214,159 11,463
10/16/05 560,432 5,600,411,019 11,929
10/23/05 615,500 5,904,086,283 15,934
10/30/05 962,709 12,354,837,359 15,687
11/06/05 820,323 9,892,192,542 15,322
11/13/05 780,964.19 10,836,053,176.33 13,320.77





By 2001, we outgrew our first Bulletin Board and now Shweir.com is embarking on utilizing a New Bulletin Board to better communicate with our readers and supporters.  We will have sections for General topics for discussion, and Forums for Al Mukhtar, Hilda and Webmaster.  This new Bulletin Board is far more interactive where by you can initiate a topic for discussion or respond to any other topic initiated by another member.   Click here to visit the > > New Bulletin Board

Below are some highlights.  An edited sample from the new Bulletin Board  

Most recent entries appear first.  

Author Topic:   Communication is key to greater success
posted 04-21-2001 02:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote
Al Mukhtaar wrote recently that what ever we do, we should have fun in the process.

Well, I would like to share with you the importance of good vs Excellent communication skills. In order to effectively communicate my message to you, I will tell a story which is now featured on the "Take Five" web page of Shweir.com...

"A man and his wife were celebrating their 25th anniversary, both at the age of 50.
 A fairy godmother came to congratulate them both and to grant them each one wish.
 The fairy godmother turned to the wife and asked', “What is your wish?” The wife thought for a second and replied, “I Would like a world tour.” The fairy godmother waved her wand, and the wife was holding two world cruise line tickets in her hand.
 Then the fairy godmother turned to the husband and asked, “What would you like?” The man thought for a second and replied, "I would like a wife 30 years younger than me."
The fairy godmother smiled, waved her wand, and the man was 80 years old."

That man communicated to the Fairy Mother his intentions of his request and the Fairy godmother granted him exactly what he requested, but she added her own interpretation to it. Instead of him getting a new twenty year young wife, he instead grew thirty years older. Poor guy, at 80 he could hardly get up let alone get it up.

If we take this one step further... suppose he asked for a beautiful 20 year old wife, and got his wish, do you think he would be happy?   Maybe and then again... he may end up with a "pre-Madonna" of a young and beautiful wife.  But she could be so jealous of her own shadow, self doubting with negative outlook, disorganized and unappreciative.  She could make his life so miserable that he would have wished to take back his original wife and treat her with more courtesy and respect than before.  

Now if he were to make as clear of a wish like:  
"I wish for a wife that is loving, caring, beautiful, tall, slender, has a positive outlook on life, resourceful, creative, unselfish, adventuresome, has a great smile, between the ages of 20 and 50, even if she were widowed or divorced and even if she had a couple of kids, someone that can be as comfortable sharing with me khibz wa zaitoon (bread and olives) as she can make me proud hosting a formal banquet... " 
Then he would have a much better chance of being a happier man for the rest of his life. 

The morale of the story is to be as specific in your communications as you possibly can. When you write an email, Please, Please write as descriptive of a subject. And when you "Reply" or "Forward" an email and you add new information, modify the subject accordingly.  When you respond to a communication, read it carefully and do your best to answer every segment and question as clearly and completely as possible.

You see, Al Mukhtaar and I and many of you who deal with lots of emails, sometimes we waste a lot of time reading through dozens of emails trying to find one from days or few weeks earlier.

One other item, many of us have gotten into the habit of not using upper case or punctuation or taking shortcuts in spelling. While it is ok in a casual and rushed settings, if I may gently suggest, do not make a habit of it. I have heard that many companies who screen job applicants via the internet consider persons with such style lack attention to details and they are less likely to be selected. Enough preaching.

Now if the Fairy godmother asked you for three wishes what would they be???



Author Topic:   Shweir.com of the month
George Matar
posted 10-12-2001 10:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for George Matar     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Month of September have passed , and October is almost half over. If I may Humble Anwar a little and Nominate him for the honor of both months. I would have liked to share it with him but, honestly I don't deserve it. Sure I was with him in Shweir most of the time, but it was him that brought all of you the news and pictures, while I am struggling and some of you think I am enjoying my long and extended vacation in New Orleans, and here in Aruba.
No Anwar has to be the Man. If there is anybody that can share the honor, are all these wonderful Shweirieh that wrote reports on the events of the Eid.

Anwar, "U Numba 1"....Yes "U'd da Man"

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posted 10-12-2001 11:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for lamloum_k     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
i agree with u Aamo George I think Anwar should be elected as Shweirieh of the month!
He has been working really hard!!


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posted 10-13-2001 05:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Klee     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Yes, he definitely lit up the website in kodachrome, fujicolor and 16-bit highcolour. And especially impressive was the effort he made to find places and relatives that meant a lot to those of us overseas. It was really appreciated. You are a very appropriate Shweirie of the Month Anwar.

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Nabil E. Matar
posted 10-13-2001 03:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Nabil E. Matar     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Yes, I agree with you all, In my book Anwer deserves not only to be the Shweiry of the month but Shweiry of the year. My friend you are some thing else

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Paul Woodfield
posted 10-14-2001 11:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul Woodfield     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
I couldn't agree more. Not only were many photos taken (and Anwar did make sure he included everybody), but he and George took great care of Sitty (Helena Ataya), Janice and Miriam - not to mention myself, in Shweir making us all feel very included. All much appreciated, my friend.


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Waleed Moujaes
posted 10-15-2001 08:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Waleed Moujaes     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
I haven't spoken to anybody in Shweir since August, and he/she hasn't mentioned Anwar. The way he presented his trip, the organized photographs with the exact dates (although the time was California's!!!), his enthusiasm,... is admirable!!! Can you image that he who hasn't been to Shweir in 30 years, was able to find Dr. Klee's grandfathers supposedly place of living who left Shweir more than 100 years ago!!!

Anwar is the honoree of the year. point.

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George Matar
posted 10-15-2001 11:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for George Matar     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Why are you so quite Ya Anwar? Have wore out the letters on the keyboard?

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posted 10-16-2001 03:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
My sincere apologies for being out of touch for a while... Don't want to bore with details... Suffice it to say that I was anxious to post as many photos and had to deal with some condos I have near Seattle and etc. etc.

NOw you guys and ladies are about to make me blush... Thank you very much for your kind words and the honorary nomination.

Well, if you recall, I was the shweir.com honoree for June of 2000. As Shweir.com Webmaster, if I may exercise some "discretionary power", I would be very happy instead to recognize some who have not yet been honored.

There is someone in particular I have in mind. That person does not surf the net, but what she did and said deserve recognition... ok, I am talking about Helena Ataya from New Zealand...

Imagine, 90 year young Helena and her support team walked all the way from the other end of Shweir all the way to Saha in Dhour and attended the Festival, spoke to the audience in classic Shweiry Arabic that I have not heard since my aunts passed away many years ago and she told the crowd that she plans on coming next year...
George looked at me and said that what that lady is doing is the best advertisement for Shweir to bring the Mughtaribeen next year...

and imagine that about 1:00 a.m. when the Hafli in Saha was finished, they were planning on walking back to Shweir... and they were prepared with flash lights... now that is impressive...

I know that between George, Janice, Mirriam, Paul and I, we can write something great about Helena and honor her.

Thank you all for your support and for keeping the momentum going.


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Paul Woodfield
posted 10-23-2001 11:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul Woodfield     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Mind you Anwar, a lot has happened since June last year!!!

I would be happy to write something up about Sitty (grandma). Shes still travelling around in Egypt at the moment. She gets out more than I do - now thats sad!!!

I will start typing.....


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Habeeb M. Nacol
posted 10-24-2001 07:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Habeeb M. Nacol     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
As evidenced in this web page, Shweir has many caring, talented, energetic as well as visionary individuals. Some are creative and originators like Hilda and George, others like me are reactors, others are silent yet forceful doers like Elie and Alfred and we have wonderful lightning rods like Ghassan and Elias. We have the level headed ankors like Klee, and those that bring in a touch of freshness like the incomparable Lamloum-I am crazy about her. Her parents must be bursting with pride!

What a great bunch of people, including you Elusive! However, once in a blue moon someone special surfaces that embodies all the goodness, humanity, leadership and all the attributes of greatness. This individual has never ceased to amaze me since I had the great fortune to meet him. And when I think that he has outdone himself, he comes up with something more worth while and spectacular. Let me weigh in and say Anwar you embody everything good that Shweir has or should have. Only a poet or an artist can paint the picture that you have composed of your trip to Shweir. There is something in this collection for everyone. You have made our village alive once again for so many of us that have never seen it or as in my case have forgotten some of its wonderful people and places.

Person of the month and of the year? Certainly. God bless you Anwar and I love you brother .

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Elias Khonaisser
posted 10-24-2001 11:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Elias Khonaisser     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Working in the tech field and building web pages as a hobby makes me appreciate what Anwar is doing because i know how much time and effort is put into presenting all the material and the details that go along with it and the frustration sometimes when the software is just not behaving the way you want it to.

i will add my voice to habeeb's and there is no better words to describe or thank you than what Habeeb said. Amen to that.

Anwar for shweirie of the month and the year.


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posted 10-26-2001 02:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Ya Habeeb el Alb, you just left me speechless or in this case writeless... I am so touched by what you all wrote... God, do I have the best family in the world or what...

I have and continue to act on the belief that I could not have done that much without the support of our team of Shweir.com and should there be any important acknowledgement, I would like to share that with Al Mukhtar and/or the Matar Brothers because with their energy, diplomacy and broad knowledge,we worked so well together. As such, I hubly accept your vote of confidence and invite the Matar Brothers to join me as honorees for October...

Now we still have to name an honoree for September.
I would like to nominate Helena Ataya for September because she is setting a great example for a 90 year young Mughtarebeh visiting her home land and as I understand it she has expnaded her tour to include the Middle East... now she is in Egypt. So, Paul, get us a nice write up to do Helena justice...

We welcome your nomination for more candidates because we have November and December quickly approaching ...

With much appreciation and love to all,



Virus Caution from Ghassan Zghaib, Canada  
May 9, 2001

2 days ago, my Norton Antivirus paid off.  I got an email with the file 'lchapp.exe' attached to it. The name was an arabic one 'Suzanne' with an arabic family name. The body said that someone needed the directions to my house. I was suspicious since it didn't mention the name of that somebody. I didn't open it at work (Smart decision). I opened it at home only to test my Norton Antivirus and it intercepted the virus.

The lesson to learn is: NEVER OPEN AN ATTACHMENT with the extension 'exe' or 'vbs' or any other executable extension.

As for the 'Nigerian Scam', no matter what we do, they will still be able to get our emails from somewhere. The only remedy for this is to use our head and keep in mind that we are 'doomed' to work hard for our money.

Ghassan Zghaib 
ICQ# : 24270082 
Online Pager: http://wwp.mirabilis.com/24270082 
Express E-Mail: 24270082@pager.mirabilis.com

Virus Caution from George Matar:  
May 9, 2001

Our company has issued this alert and just wanted to share it with you, Be very careful.

S&B has received news of a virus being distributed in an email with the subject line of "Homepage". The message body contains an attachment, and the text "Hi! You've got to see this page! It's really cool ;0)".

If you receive such an email, please delete it without opening the attachment. Although our server intercepts these type viruses, it's better to be safe. If possible, telephone the person who sent it to you, and warn them that they are infected

Caution about Nigerian scams from Dr. Klee in Australia, 
Sent on May 7, 2001

Dear George and Anwar,

I thought you might be interested in some observations I have made on this.
As I mentioned on the Bulletin Board in Tech Corner, I have had a series of "Nigerian Scam" letters, at least one a month, since putting my email address in the guest book on February 8th. I have reported three to Yahoo.com on Saturday, as that is the internet provider where most of them originated. They have already dealt with Fela Attah quickly as other people had also complained, and I am waiting to hear about the other two. Yahoo.com's terms of service section gives detailed information about how to look at the headers of emails to track where they have come from so you can report the entire header showing the path of the email and the entire unedited email message including the subject. It helps them to investigate it.
Connected with that, on the weekend I have checked some of the headers on the emails where a Shweirieh bil Mahjar sender asked for a receipt to be sent to say that the message has been read (this includes Jabbour, Corban-Banks and Abou Sauder on the Shweir list that always request email receipts). This happens both when they write to the entire list which they apparently now appear to have in their address books or when they reply to Anwar or yourself and we also get a copy and have to send receipts too. In one case (from Arab Emirates) on 25th February, the receipt saying I had read the mail went automatically to two email addresses so I am wondering whether it not only went to the sender but some other person too. The text of the receipt attachment was as follows:
 Final-Recipient: rfc822;zad4amal@emirates.net.ae
Original-Message-ID: <011801c09ee6$d9ae0120$5cf72ad5@8080>
Disposition: manual-action/MDN-sent-manually; displayed

Within 30 minutes of that receipt being sent, the first scam letter was received from Miriam Abacha. It is interesting but I can't make any more of it than that at the moment as it may be a coincidence.
In researching these nigerian scams on the internet this week I found a site with 180 pages of details about the nigerian scam artists at http://www.superhighway.is/iis/names_of_crooks.html and in searching through I found that the telephone number in Fela Attah's scam email is the same of that reported for a Dr. Umar Dikko Azeez, the fax is the same as Asiodu Garuba Dudu, Dr. Yusuf Ibn Farouq and Dr. Ibrahim Bako, and the home telephone is the same as Dr. Ibrahim Bako, Dr. Ayo Banjo and Dr. Zulu J. Mbeki. All of these are probably one person only, i.e. the person mutates his name over time. Some of the emails that have a number, like felaattah71 are probably highly organized clerically and maintain a specific identity for that location, changing to another name when their "free email" is cut off by an internet provider for abusing the service. Some of these internet providers relay email to mobile phones etc. so the actual location can be more complex.
On another occasion a virus message ( the HaHaHa virus ) turned up after soon after I started receiving the emailed joke messages on the mailing list. It may have attached itself to the Shweir address book from a downloaded joke source or it may have been linked to one of the receipts I mentioned above as I remember receiving a dangerous "worm virus" when Abou Sauder was sending receipted messages. This surprised me at the time because he writes from a computer consulting firm, but maybe that puts him at enormous risk of virus attack and transmission, and us also because he has the whole mailing list on his computer. I remember being surprised that it might have been from his address book as I thought he would have good virus-checking software. It would be sad if I have to leave receipt-requested emails un-open and trash them. Once the receipt request pops up on the screen, it seems impossible to not reply to that receipt message and get it off the screen to delete the message; it doesn't let you.
It's interesting, like detective work, to solve how they are getting the addresses. Due to the correct spelling of my surname, I am sure it is from the Guest Book list as on the update mailing list my surname is misspelt and the emails are personally addressed. I am sure that it is not from the Bulletin Board profile as I took my email address off the profile of the Bulletin Board when the problem started and it never had my surname anyway.
I have seen guest books where the email address and sometimes even the entire message is hidden. I think that this might be the way to go but it would be a great pity. I wonder how sites like the Lebanese White Pages (of emigrants) manage this problem. It would be a great pity to make contact between us all harder although I am sure that the web-master would put us in touch with another person if we asked.
Keep up the good work.

Virus Alert:   This came courtesy of Nabil Matar sent on 4-19-2001 

I think this is a very important message that all should read with regards to this new virus.

Subject: FW: Fw: Virus alert ... Please read

 Virus with no cure.Please, send this information to every person in your address book.

 If you receive an e-mail that reads "Upgrade Internet" do not open it, as it contains an executable file named "perrin.exe" it will erase all the data in your hard drive and it will stay in your memory. Every time that you upload any data, that data will be automatically  erased and you will not be able to use your computer again.

 This information was published yesterday in the CNN web site.   This is a very dangerous virus.   To this date. There is no known anti  virus program for this particular virus please, forward this information to your friends, so that they will be on the alert, also check the list below, sent by IBM with the names of some e-mails that, if received. SHOULD NOT BE OPENED and must be deleted immediately. Because they contain attached viruses.

This way your computer will be safe.   The Titles are:

 1) buddylst.exe 
 2) calcul8r.exe
 3) deathpr.exe
 4) einstein.exe
 5) happ.exe
 6) girls.exe
 7) happy99.exe
 8) japanese.exe
 9) keypress.exe
 10) kitty.exe
11) monday.exe
12) teletubb.exe
13) The Phantom Menace
14) prettypark.exe
16) perrin.exe
17) I love You
18) Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
19) CELCOM Screen Saver or CELSAVER.EX
20) Win a Holiday (e-mail)

Subject: Virus Announced by Microsoft.   This is VERY SERIOUS!! Please forward to everyone you know There is a virus out flow being sent to people via E-mail.  lt. is considered the A.l.D.S. VIRUS of computers.  It will destroy your memory, sound card and speakers, your drive and it will infect your mouse or pointing device as well as your keyboards, making it so that you can't type and it will not register on the screen. It seIf-terminates only after it eats 5MB of hard drive space and will delete all programs.

It will come via an E-mail called "(OPEN. VERY COOL!:)"  DELETE IT immediately'! It will basically render your computer useless.


Very Urgent, Must Read Please.  If you receive an E-mail Titled "Win A Holiday" DO NOT open it.  It will erase everything on your hard drive.  Forward this letter out to as many people as you can.  This is a new, very malicious virus and not many people know about it. 

This information was announced yesterday morning from Microsoft.  Neil Ferrick,  Compaq Computer Corporation

Webmaster's note:  
Your best defense is having a good anti virus program that you update frequently, once a week or at least once every month. But in the absence of such protection, the above is very good advice.  It is also good to back up your personal records often.  

Author Topic:   The Humanitarian Side - Wheelchairs those who really need them
posted 03-05-2001 02:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote
Last Thursday, I attended the Monthly meeting of the Lebanese American Association (LAA) as a guest of its founder, Fouad Malouf. One of the guest speakers was a representative of Wheelchair Foundation (WF) that donate wheelchairs throughout the world for those who truly need them. The organization was founded by Ken Berring (sp??). For those of you fans of the American Football fans, he is the owner of the Seattle Seahawks. He pledged $15 Million to help send wheelchairs to individuals and organizations in foreign countries. The honorary chairpersons are the King and Queen of Spain and its board of directors are very prominent leaders of the world including Nelson Mandela.
The way it works is this: They buy wheels chairs from manufacturers wholesale by the 10,000's to keep cost at minimum. They will co-ordinate with organizations in the U.S. to pay for half of the cost, Wheelchair Foundation will match such funds.

To make it cost effective and worthwhile, they have a minimum of one container that holds 240 wheel chairs or one half container that holds 120 wheelchairs. Total wholesale cost of $36,000 for a full container and 18,000 for half.

If LAA decides to go with this program, that means that they have to raise $18,000, WF will match the other 18,000, pay for transportation and administrative and travel cost for its representatives. One big important goal for the organization is to donate the wheel chairs to mostly individuals and select well regarded organizations like the Red Cross or medical clinics or senior centers. They want to avoid politics or the chance for any mismanagement of this operation.

WF primary objective is to donate these wheelchairs to make a difference in the lives of those handicapped people who can ill afford one and transform their lives. The wheelchairs will be pre-assigned and accounted for before they arrive at their destination.

The LAA have not committed yet to participate but they are giving it serious consideration. If their board of directors votes favorably, they will need to hear from as many representatives and organizations in Lebanon about the candidates who are in most need. The board will decide on distribution.

1. Do we have any people in Shweir who are in utmost need of wheelchairs?
2. What about medical clinics and senior centers? Do they need wheelchairs and if so, how many?

At this time, we cannot make any promises. However, should LAA proceed ahead with this worthy program, we need to show our support for the LAA and would like our town to be well prepared and represented.

This unique opportunity can transform many people's lives. We cannot do it all by ourselves from overseas, we need someone in Shweir who is good in internet communication to provide us with the necessary information.

Any volunteers???




Author Topic:   Shweir Goals from New Year's Resolutions
posted 02-23-2001 01:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote
In December we posted proposed New Years Resolutions. Thanks to those of you who responded to help us fine tune them.

To refresh your memory, the following is an excerpt:

"New Years Resolutions 
There is a tradition in America: Just before New Year, people set goals they aspire to achieve during the New Year. They call these goals "New Years Resolutions". Some goals are easy and others are challenging. The idea is by trying, people get closer to their goals and enjoy a sense of accomplishment.  
For Shweir, achieving the proposed goals will depend on how well the community can work together. This is not a promise but an opportunity. Can we surprise ourselves and exceed our own expectations? That is very possible and you can be part of it. With your participation and feedback, we will update these goals shortly after Christmas and post Shweir's New Years Resolutions for 2001.

1 Open House
10 Computers
100 Books in library
1000 Trees to be planted
2000 meters of a walking trail  
2001 Plants Like trailing Geraniums 

Soon these will be discussed in more depth on the New Bulletin Board"

Here is our chance to discuss these:

1 Open House:
When any Shweiry living abroad comes to Shweir, would it be nice to have a central location for them to get information, learn about their town, heritage, their friends, share a cup of coffee, get on the internet, leave a message for a friend, ask for directions, learn about their family tree and/or post a message on Shweir.com?
It would be wonderful for us to establish a location staffed by responsible volunteers to create such a nice place.
Perhaps we can start with some space at the Baladieh, since that would be the most central place. After all, the people who built the Baladieh were those Mughtaribeen. If we welcome our Mughtaribeen with an Open House, warm heart, a hot cup of coffee, and a big Shweiry Smile, the sky is the limit of how much we can accomplish with their help when they feel that they belong and part of the Shweir community.

I welcome your thoughts and suggestions on the best approach to establish and administer such Open House. At first we can establish that for the months of June through September and hopefully build up to a year round basis.

10 Computers:
Well, we all know what happened to that Resolution: A great success, thanks to our resourceful man in Shweir, Habib Khaleel Moujaes and all those who contributed. Read full story on "Shweir News" web page.

100 Books and 1000 Trees:
The only change I would make here is to change the order so it will be:

100 Trees and 1000 Books:

100 Trees: We anticipate to plant at least 100 special and commemorative trees such as California Giant Sequoia Redwoods, a variety of pines such as Noble and Douglas Fir, oak and cedar plus countless of Shweiry pines. Come to think of it, what if we plant and place description of every type of pine, cedar, oak, maple etc.? Thanks to Michael Sawaya, the many volunteers (see Environment Web page) we are well on our way to achieving our goal. As far as the California Redwoods, I will do my best to send or bring with me this summer at least one young dozen of these fine trees.

1000 Books:
Create a library of good books, old school year books, how to books, history, novels, culture and make it available to all Shweirieh and visitors. Books can be donated or purchased if at a great bargain. It would be ideal if the library was close to or next door to the Shweir Open House.

2000 meters of a Walking trail:
What is the most scenic and enjoyable 2000± meter walking trail that is most suitable to the general public? Can someone do a sketch, describe scenery, Ains, churches, history, architecture and architecture. If we do so well on the two thousand meter, why not add a 5 km and a 10 km walk or trail. How long would it be to do al Kassouff, Ain al Sindyaneh, Dayr Mar Elias and Ma Yohanna, churches and Ains of Shweir and return to the Saha?

2001 plants:
These can be like trailing Geraniums, or plants from seed. Imagine if the homes in Dhour and Shweir had beautiful flowers on their verandas and along the streets. It would be so welcoming and a pleasure for people to enjoy especially for those who live there.

The above are New Year’s Resolutions or goals that we hope that with your help we can transform them into reality in 2001.

We, the Mughtaribeen, are at a disadvantage because we do not live in Shweir. As such, we are limited on how much we can do physically. That is why we rely on those who care in Shweir to make things happen. Accordingly, it is important for us to maintain a great line of communication and work together as a team. We welcome your comments, helpful suggestions and volunteering to achieve our goals.

Best regards,


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Waleed Moujaes
posted 02-23-2001 01:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Waleed Moujaes      Reply w/Quote

Those are great ideas. Since they need follow ups, we need to find somebody in Shweir who we can depend on. I suggest that Shweir.com ADOPT one of the organizations in Shweir, mainly "Scouts of Shweir". They are the best one suited for our goals. All are young guys, ready to work for their community, not related to any kind of politics ( they are not politicised). In addition, we have "Music of Shweir" which is related to the scouts group, and a group of young guys forming the Football Club of Shweir ( visit this web: welcome.to/shweirfc). This web is being built by our new generation!! I think the main engineer working on this is Ayman Shalhoub whose name was mentioned before on shweir.com.

1- Open House is a great idea during Eid al Moughtaribine.
2- Planting more than 100 trees could also be done during the festival. I think Mike and his team will be able to prepare trees for us, in addition to the ones anybody could take with him. In that respect, we need to check the rules and regulations of the US, Lebanon, and countries of transit
( where the plane would land for transit).
3- We have many beautiful places for walking trails. This needs to be discussed in details.
4- Library... As I remember the scouts used to have a small library. We can discuss this with their management.

Those are some few ideas. What do you think?


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Carmen Moujaes
posted 02-23-2001 07:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Carmen Moujaes      Reply w/Quote
The resolution you suggested for this year would be great if it is accomplished. Another suggestion would be if each shweiry would care for the surroundings of his house such as taking care of the wild bushes which grow uncontrolled all around wonderful houses or rocks and rubbish which are just disposed around the place, these are few things which improve the picture of the village and do not impose high costs if each one did his share .
When I visited Shweir last May I was shocked with how shaby and unkempt it was. People put great effort in renovating their houses (most have done a wonderful job) but ignore how it lookes around their houses , its a pity. The Sehah of Dhour for instance, has a newly built hotel but look at what`s around , shops with dismantled signs which paint has faded , electric wires all over the place and rubbish scattered all around. Each person is a part of this community and if one cares for his home and shop to be in order so should he care accordingly for his surroundings . I went around in Lebanon and did see that some villages and cities did take care of the look they displayed to the public. I hope this suggestion would be taken into consideration also . As to the walking path you suggested its wonderful especially if one could build on the path exercising facilities such as bars for stretching ones muscles after jogging , or suggestions on how to walk or run placed on a sign post, these are inexpensive to build and they would enhance a path and make it more enjoyable for young and old .
Well I hope these suggestions would be realized and that Dhour el Shweirs beauty would be developed through its citizens . The Shweirieh have a history of being efficient builders hopefully they would gain a reputation of caring of what they built. If each one does his share we all would enjoy a more beautiful village which we are anyway proud of belonging to .

Best wishes to all,
Carmen Rafic Moujaes

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posted 02-24-2001 06:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Klee      Reply w/Quote
These are achievable plans, but I would replant trees indigenous to the area, ESPECIALLY CEDAR. Great forests of cedars once covered the mountains. It is something special and moving for anyone overseas to be involved in replanting the Cedars, the international symbol of Lebanon. It would not be appropriate to plant American redwoods and you would not want to accidentally introduce plant diseases which could wipe out the local flora.
Regarding books, this could start easily if people from overseas knew where to send them. A public reading room in a drop-in centre would be a valuable tourist resource. Also would the school like more reference books, even if they are second-hand?
Planter boxes and window boxes of flowers and hardy plants that withstand the winter, and other street improvements like public seats would be lovely. I agree with Carmen's comments about the appearance of streets as it was sad to see the deterioration in the two posted photos of a main street intersection taken years apart, showing advertising signs and desolate appearance.
Also I think Hilda's post in Hilda's column about the needs of inhabitants, such as insulation in the winter, is even more important. I wonder what the social needs of the poor or elderly are. It is hard for such people to maintain their yards and homes, and that is something the scouts could be helping with already, but without funds and skills in carpentry it would be hard for them to renovate homes. Is there a local council? By adding to the comfort and beauty of the village, it might lift spirits, and would make Shweir even more beautiful as a mountain resort. I hope one day to see it.

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posted 02-24-2001 11:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote

You bring up new avenues that we were unaware of. By all means, we would love to have the Scouts of Shweir, Music of Shweir and Football Club of Shweir join in. Yes, I communicated w/Ayman. He is a talented young man. He has been quite busy w/his studies and is trying to get practice abroad this summer.

Since you know these groups, what would be the best way to communicate with them. Does any of their members have internet access and wish to communicate on behalf of the group or individually?

Thanks for your recent group of photos. They will appear with the next update.


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posted 02-24-2001 11:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote

You are right on with your observations. Your suggestions are a top priority for us. That is why we intend to plant thousands of flowers. We hope to mobilize groups of volunteers shortly before Eid al Mughtaribeen to comb first the prominent areas in and around the Saha and as our al Mukhtaar bil Mahjar would like to do even plant flowers in and around the cemeteries.

Our objective is to win the locals over to do just what you suggested by showing them the benefits of caring and beautifying the neighborhood because it is the gateway to their homes.


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posted 02-25-2001 12:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote

Excellent Comments. Definitely, the great majority of trees to be planted would be indigenous to the area. Pine trees is what Shweir is famous for. Over 90% of the trees to be planted would be Shweiry pine. I have a couple of great photos of pine trees sent by Waleed Moujaes who was the first respondent. They will be featured with the next update on the Photos web page. Also, we will plant as many Lebanese Cedars as we can. they are quite a bit more expensive and very very slow to grow. that is why we do not have that many cedars in Lebanon.

Should we bring trees from overseas, they will be agriculturally inspected and certified. Bringing such prized and rare (to Shweir) trees would heighten awareness about the environment and be educational at the same time. There are lots of desolate areas as a result of war, bombing and ensuing fires. Any additional trees is like a rebirth and better than the sad scars of war.

By planting a tree in honor of or in memory of someone, we can raise funds to help those who are less fortunate than we are. There are some fine organizations in Shweir to assist the elderly, sick and poor. We intend to support as many of them and promote eCommerce.

Yes, there is a local council "Baladieh" (Arabic meaning: the town), somehow, in spite of repeated efforts, I am ashamed to say that we failed to establish a line of communication with them. (see on Shweir News web page: An Open letter to the Baladieh").

Good things resulted from our attempts to communicate: Our al Mukhtaar assumed that the Baladieh did not have a computer and sent out an SOS to Shweirieh to donate computers which resulted in the successful Computer fund drive for the schools.

Klee, of all the Shweirieh, there is no question that you will see the town of your forefathers and soon. Now you have hundreds of more reasons to visit. The friends you made in the last month are anxiously awaiting to meet you and look forward to more of your insightful postings. What if you and the family come to visit when most of us (Shweir.com family) will be there... early August? I have not been there in decades and am looking forward to this summer especially after making so many friends over the Shweir.com.


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posted 02-26-2001 06:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for hilda      Reply w/Quote
KLee,Anwar and George;

How feasible is it to conduct a "virtual needs assessment"? in other words, Klee can ask the pertinent questions and people from wherever can answer and based on the answers-hopefully they are truthfull- we can identify the current needs of the people in the town and help them prioritize their needs in order to find ways -hopefully- to meet those needs.This is not to say that we as people scattered around the world can help them achieve those goals, but we can help bring the needs to the surface so they'd be addressed by the appropriate agencies... How wild is this idea Klee?

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posted 02-26-2001 09:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Klee      Reply w/Quote
Ya Hilda. This is good. But don't forget the keywords of COMMUNITY CONSULTATION, so we must involve the people of Shweir. And, as you considered also in the other column, how do we prevent War? Maybe by being peaceful and caring like this and letting the Baladieh know that people all over the world want to help and want to know what small projects they really need done, that we might do. It might take a letter and a postage stamp or two, I think! On the other hand, now that the school is on the Internet, maybe the Principal could print this topic discussion and give it to the Baladieh, and tell us what they think. Or it could be a school project: ["What small projects does Shweir really need to have done?" Pick one topic and explain: Environment/ Social service/ Technology support/ Educational resources/ Tourist facilities/ Heritage conservation].
I'm sure the children are very clever in Shweir, especially when the snow is falling and the teachers can't come and they might miss lunch!.

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posted 02-27-2001 03:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Webmaster      Reply w/Quote
These interactions are so wonderful. I love the diversity of issues, suggestions and remedies. You bring out the humanistic aspect to the forefront. I know that when so many of us go to Shweir this summer, we are going to get as many answers first hand.

In the meantime, we will do what ever we can to get the towns people attention and responses. There are two "charities" to help the poor. We listed (on the Community web page) as much as we know about them and urged them to communicate with us.

So far, the most knowledgeable, active and communicative person has been Habib Moujaes, although he is not a member of either charity. I wish more of Shweir's people follow in his footsteps and at least communicate. Possibly, the Open House concept to welcome not only al Mughtaribeen but the locals as well will help open many doors and windows of communication. We have so many great ideas. Now we need to find volunteers to champion each idea. I know we are all eager to get answers. We need to be a little patient and persistent.

On the bright side, look at the amazing talent we have discovered in the last couple of weeks... more on that with the next update.


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posted 02-27-2001 05:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Klee      Reply w/Quote
On the topic of Cedar planting, I just found an interesting item on the internet about a 'Cedar Tree Project' at http://www.namnews.org/cedtree.htm which says (from Brooklyn, New York, USA): "The National Apostolate of Maronites (NAM) in cooperation with the International Committee for the Safeguarding of the Cedar of Lebanon, is sponsoring a grove of 500 Cedar Trees in the Arz al Rab area near Becharre, Lebanon....Each tree sponsored will be commemorated by an inscribed plaque (leaf-shaped) to be mounted on the 'Tree of Life' which stands at the entrance to the Cedar Grove. All participating donors will receive a Certificate of Appreciation noting their donation and their commemorative inscription for the leaf-plaque on the Tree of Life". Each cedar planted is a minimum donation of US$75. When this forest matures in hundreds of years it will be enormous.

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posted 02-27-2001 08:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for hilda      Reply w/Quote
No, Klee I did not forget community consultation. You can't forget that in dhour where there are more chiefs than there can be Indians. However, the idea of a community generating its own needs assessment and setting its priorities is a novel thing in the country. More so, getting community wide support for a set of projects is also a major difficulty.

Ther is nothing like working face to face with the community to bring about those things, however, there are no such effort as far as I know. The infra -structure and social structure have both been dealt a big blow due to the effects of war. People -lots- have left. The people who are there are pressed for basic resources let alone the resources for having someone on a continuing basis work with the community for promoting a comprehensive workable plan to meet needs.

Even internet access is expensive. My wild idea is that those who do have internet access may somehow see the town issues being discussed and as they are,issues surface priorities are set, initiatives considered and some element of positive change will eventually take place.

This is the wildest thing I have ever considered, but given the cir***stances in the country, playing that wild card can be helpful...

This is reminescent of the proverb: Need is the mother of invention. And need is great there...

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posted 02-27-2001 04:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Klee      Reply w/Quote
I agree with your wild card idea. To achieve sustainable development, the discussion itself is very important basis for planning. If we know that the village is aware of the interest, then this will help as Anwar mentioned when people go in summer as further ideas will come. Some extra small labour tasks might even be completed by the group while there, e.g. clearing litter, gardening, painting.

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Last Sunset of Old and First Light of New Millennium in Hawaii

Since I mentioned that I was on vacation over the New Year's Holiday, some asked if I had a good vacation... Yes, I had a great vacation.   Thank You.  For those who are curious or interested, we went to Hawaii and stayed at a small port town of Kailua on the Kona coast of the big Island of Hawaii.  I had intended to chase and capture rainbows... on film, like the rainbow photo on Home Page, but ended up capturing a dramatic shot of the last sunset of the Past Millennium and the first light of the New Millennium. take a look.  Hawaii is one of the last large land masses before you cross the International Time Zone.  Hawaii is 22 hours behind New Zealand.  As such the last sun light of a particular day sets somewhere in the Pacific Ocean beyond Hawaii and the first new light starts a few hours time zones before New Zealand and Australia.  

During the day on New Year's Eve, we drove to a remote waterfront part of the island called "City of Refuge".  In the old days, before the road was built, it was like a sanctuary to those who survived swimming or walking to it.  We did some rituals, one of which was for each of us to find a black and a white rock.  Then each of us found a secluded spot close to the ocean, sat on the lava rock, watched huge waves, contemplated and/or meditated.  Holding the black rock, we reflected on the sad, anger, stress, disappointing and/or unpleasant things that we experienced over the past years or decades.  The objective was to will and transfer such negative feelings and experiences into the black rock.  And when we felt we were ready, each of us cast our black stone into the ocean.  Then each held the white stone and recalled as many of the pleasant, fun and happy thoughts and rewarding experiences, about our loved ones and the things that we are thankful for.  When everyone came back, we held hands in a circle, shared and reinforced positive thoughts.  We kept the white stones with the idea that the white stone with its good energy will stay with us when the new Millennium begins.  After a Nice New Year's Eve Dinner and Dance into the next Century, we woke up before dawn the next day and walked from the condos we were staying to the nearby sand beach to welcome the new light.  We brought with us our white stones.  Each found a suitable space facing the ocean and again we contemplated in silence all the positive things we are thankful for.  Again, we reinforced that energy into the white stone.  The first rays of sun lit up some clouds above the ocean.  It was an extra ordinary scene especially when the clouds appeared very close to spelling the word "JOY".  By the time we got the camera, the clouds spread out a bit, but if you stretch your imagination,  you could possibly decipher "JOY" in the golden clouds.  When we felt complete, each cast the white stone into the ocean.

To you our readers, friends and loved ones, we 

Here are some thumbnails  taken in Kailua, Kona, Hawaii.  Click on any to enlarge...

Black & White Rocks.JPG (30433 bytes)
Black & white 
rocks on Lava bed
Last 2000 Sunset 110d.JPG (36203 bytes)
Last Sunset 
of the Millennium from a beach front restaurant where we had our  New Year's celebration. 
Last 2000 Sunset 220d.JPG (56980 bytes)
Sunset Close up
New Years Eve
Kailua at nite.JPG (27074 bytes)
Kailua Shoreline
First Lite 2001- JOY.JPG (16955 bytes)
First light of the 
new Millennium
Clouds spell JOY
w/ stretch of imagination!

The shoreline of the big island have some nice sandy beaches, but most of it is made of hard lava rock because the big island of Hawaii is home to Kilauea, one of the world's most active and accessible volcanoes.  As such, the big Island of Hawaii is one of the very few places on earth that is getting bigger due to the lava that continues to pour from the top of the volcano.  A couple of years ago I took a helicopter tour and photographed the island including the volcano, some were published in some international magazines.  To give you a more dramatic feel of the volcano, I accessed some general info and photos from the Kilauea Gallery.

Kilauea stands 4090 feet in elevation. Its current eruption is taking place on its flank some 7 miles southeast and down rift at the Pu'u O'o vent. The Pu'u O'o- Kupaianaha eruption has been going on continuously since 3 January 1983. Early in the eruption there were high lava fountains, but now since there is a clear conduit from the summit magma chamber of Kilauea to Pu'u O'o, the lava is now bubbling out of the vent and traveling silently in tubes toward the sea.  The eruption continues.   Enjoy Kilauea!!!!!!!!  


K Hi Volcano Kilauea eruption.jpg (21332 bytes)
People watching
K Hi bloodred.jpg (37883 bytes)
Blood Red Lava
K Hi fieryniag.jpg (63596 bytes) 
River of Lava
K Hi Kilauea Eruption.gif (41736 bytes) 
Volcano erruption -
(Note tiny Helicopter near base)
K Hi Lava flows to Ocean.jpg (20955 bytes)
Lava into Ocean
Forest Lava glow 2.jpg (19086 bytes)
Lava burn trees
K Hi Lion pouring Lava.jpg (23789 bytes)
Lava from 
"Lion's mouth"
Forest Lava glow.jpg (40510 bytes)
Forest Lava Glow
K Hi Volcano Fountain nite.jpg (36105 bytes)
Nite lava scene
Lava Ocean Moon.jpg (23719 bytes)
Lava - Ocean - Moon


Responses to the "Shweiry of the Year Nomination"

Posted by George Matar on January 05, 2001 at 10:56:00:

Here is the first wave of people responding to al Mukhtaar's nomination of 
Anwar George Kenicer, our Webmaster, to the "Shweiry of the Year" Award:

 From Alfred Moujaes in Texas
Dear Al Mukhtar;
You are absolutely right, Anwar is the Shweiry of the year and years to come.
Without him all this would have not happened, I second that motion.....
Anwar WE LOVE YOU !!!!!!!!
Hope to see you soon.

 From Walid and Saera Khairallah in Canada:
Kol aam w'inta b'kheir Ya Mukhtar.
Congratulations on the choice of the categories. Indeed very interesting insight. You score 10/10 for the nomination of Anwar as the Shweiry of the year. How about a special title for Habib K Moujaes whose benevolant action was critical for creating the computer purchase funds.

 From Hana Archbold in California
Dear Anwar,
I remember your Mom telling me that Saadeh saw you when you were a baby. Your Mom said that Saadeh told her that this baby is going to change history. I can see that you indeed did.
Congratulations! you deserve that title.
We love you indeed.

 From Habib Moujaes in Shweir, he wrote: “How about Most Valuable Member (MVM) for this year?”

 From Nabil Matar:
I will add my vote to you both. Anwar had done a magnificent job. Thank you Sheik Anwar, also our thanks to Hilda, Rabih and of course Mukhtarna bil mahgar Abou Makhool.

 Salim Bou Chebl: How about “ e-MAN “ of the year for Habib!!??

 From Walid and Saera Khairallah: in response to Salim’s suggested title
E-man of the year sounds fantastic, and to please Hana, perhaps Most Valuable E-Man( since Anwar already has a title).

From Dcn Ihsan Bou Sader in  New Zealand
Dear God Brother George “Al Mukhtar”
To you, yours and all the Shweir people wherever you are; with aid Elghtas a special wish of every success in the that is good for you and that your treasures are everlasting.
Now to the best man of shweir.com for 2000, well ANWAR is my friend and I declare this first to avoid any call of conflict of interest, then endorse all the good words said about him and add he is one and only very special and would like to see him recognised.
As for Habib Moujaes, again I declare he is family, but what he did deserves a title along the lines stated.
Being Orthodox I am always reminded of doing things in threes, so the third recognition will have to be to our Mukhtar...
The servant of Christ, in His Loving Grace,
Fr Dcn George

From Dr. Fouad Tebshrani in California
What a webmaster and a dedicated person Anwar is. I truly respect this guy for his character and honesty, and above all his soothing personality which I admire most.

From Henry Moujaes
*Mabrook ya ANWAR it’s good choice,
may i give you you another title? (YES)
you are the (GOLDEN BRIDGE ) also,
wiz 3aynak ya MOUKHTAR.

From Suheil Baaklini in Texas
Add my vote to Anwar and I would like to nominate you Mukhtar as a Co Shweiry of the year and Half. Thanks to your efforts and the hospitality of Alfred otherwise this thing would not even happen.
Happy New Year and come to Austin when ever you can.

From Mona Khoury in Florida
Mabrook to Anwar, Ism ala musamma. Anwar himil mashaal alnoor ala Daiitnah. 
George to sound like a cliche, you are the wind behind our wings.
Alfred, a toast to you the silent partner. 


Posted by Waleed Moujaes on January 04, 2001 at 16:44:22:

In Reply to: shweir.com in summary posted by George Matar on January 03, 2001 at 09:29:59:

After working with several organizations in Shweir from 1985 until I left in 1996 and up till now, "shweir.com" is the most productive of all.  Indeed, Anwar is the Shweiry of the year, but we should not forget Hilda, Rabih, you George, and also Habib.  Thank you all, and wishing every Shweiry a healthy and prosperous New Year.

Columbus, OH

Re: Responses to the "Shweiry of the Year Nomination"

Posted by Anwar on January 06, 2001 at 16:35:05:

In Reply to: Responses to the "Shweiry of the Year Nomination" posted by George Matar on January 05, 2001 at 10:56:00:

Happy New Year to all!!!

See what happens when Webmaster goes on vacation? Big surprises. May be I ought to go on vacation more often...
Now on the serious side, thank you George for nominating me for the "Shweiry of the Year Award" and thank you all for your kind words and vote of confidence. I am overwhelmed and speechless. On the other hand, as Webmaster, I cannot stay speechless for too long.

If I may use the analogy of our Shweir.com as a car: Granted, I put together the basic structure, but that structure could not take you anywhere without an engine. That is where our al Mukhtaar, George Matar, comes in. He is like a super charged engine, the heart of Shweir.com.

And yes of course, I would like to acknowledge Hilda Sawaya, our prolific writer. Hilda is like the electricity in the car that lights our path. Rabih Khoury is like the mechanic that keeps that car fine-tuned. (He also can install optional stereo components for the best Lebanese music at bargain price - balash). And you, our contributors and volunteers like Nora in Texas with her Poetry & Memories, Jamil in Canada with his Saif oo Terse & History, Rosalie in Brazil sharing a rare treasure in the 1922 Shweir Guidebook, Fr. Dcn. George Ihsan Bousauder in New Zealand with his wisdom and prayers and our two Habibs in Shweir, Halabi for photos and Moujaes for bold initiatives; you are like the wheels for the car. Mike Sawaya's Environmental drive is like the Oxygen the car needs. There are many more names to mention, forgive me if I overlooked someone's name.

To the officers and board of directors of the newly formed non profit "Shweir Fund" (soon to be official after completion of tax formalities) Mona Khoury, Hilda Sawaya, George Matar, Elie Boukheir, Habib Moujaes and myslef under the leadership of President Alfred Moujaes, this new team is like the steering wheel and controls to that car.

To you, our readers, you are like the fuel for the car... no matter how great of a car we build, without fuel, it does not function. You are like the soul to Shweir.com.

As you can see, we are interdependent on one another. No one segment can function without the help of the other. Your participation in reading, sharing memories and ideas bring us closer together and give us the motivation and inspiration to do great things for Shweir and its people, our families.

Back to the Nomination. Here is the way I see it: I feel undeserving of such honor considering the extra ordinary contribution of our al Mukhtaar, George Matar. Everything I wrote about him in the Acknowledgement in Shweir.com Home Page still rings even more true today. If anyone should get such honor, it should be our al Mukhtaar, George Matar.

I do not know the guidelines for the Shweiry of the year Award. If I may make two suggestions:

1. To avoid a stalemate of one good Shweiry nominating the other, I would accept such nomination on one condition: It would be an honor for me to share with George such nomination with special recognition to Hilda, Rabih, Habib and the other mentioned contributors, or
2. As an alternative, to nominate the entity of Shweir.com or the Team of Shweir.com for this special award.

Again, many thanks and best wishes to all of you who are part of the Shweir.com community.

You are the reason for the success of Shweir.com.



New Years Resolutions 
There is a tradition in America: Just before New Year, people set goals they aspire to achieve during the New Year.  They call these goals "New Years Resolutions".  Some goals are easy and others are challenging.  The idea is by trying, people get closer to their goals and enjoy a sense of accomplishment.  
For Shweir, achieving the proposed goals will depend on how well the community can work together. This is not a promise but an opportunity. 
Can we surprise ourselves and exceed our own expectations?  That is very possible and you can be part of it.  With your participation and feedback, we will update these goals shortly after Christmas and  post Shweir's New Years Resolutions for 2001.

1 Open House
10 Computers
100 Books in library
1000 Trees to be planted
2000 meters of a walking trail  
2001 Plants Like trailing Geraniums 
Soon these will be discussed in more depth 
on the New


Recapturing Shweir's Glory

Posted by Anwar on November 24, 2000 at 02:50:36:

Recently, I read an excellent article by Hilda Sawaya posted on the Shweir Bulletin Board titled “Change: Is it plausible or merely impossible?” (See posting On October 13, 2000). While I was contemplating it, Ihsan Bou Sader from New Zealand wrote a great response. Ever since, I have been meaning to follow up on both of these very important messages. For your convenience I copied and pasted their articles at the end of this message.
These two postings reminded me of a great TV program I recently watched. It was a documentary titled: “Is America number one?” The program compared three economic models, namely: America, Hong Kong and India.
Without getting too much into details, the primary factor and basic ingredients in achieving the best economic model turned out to be the freedom, ease and support of starting and conducting business in these countries with minimum government or regulatory interference.
Although Hong Kong is a very small territory with very limited natural resources, (they have to import most of their goods), the Hong Kong economic model turned out to be the best, or number one. They facilitate trade and commerce… any one can register and obtain a permit to do business in Hong Kong usually within 24 hours. They showed a contrast of how Hong Kong was a few decades ago with tin and bamboo huts and shacks. And how it transformed to a dynamic business center with high-rise & luxury offices, condos and hotels.
America was second… it takes a bit more time to get a permit to do business and there is more government and regulatory controls.
India was last. They interviewed a businessman who built a factory to employ a few hundred people. Due to apparent corruption and expectation of large bribes, some local officials would not grant him the OK to hook up to full electric power. They only allowed him intermittent power for a few hours a day to keep him barely surviving at their mercy. After 18 months of such treatment, he was forced to close the factory. The town lost hundreds of jobs that they badly needed. It was not a matter that there was limited electric supply. They interviewed a western expert who’s company would have been able to hook up the full electrical supply within a few days if approval was granted. In order to apply for approval, the applicant has to fill so many forms and pay lots of money in un-necessary application fees with each form. They showed where the forms ended up… in a warehouse or storage bundled up sitting neatly of a shelf. When the applicant needed to find out the status of his application, he had to fill more forms and pay more fees… or bribes. They interviewed a high-ranking Indian official about the merit and justification for such practices. The Indian official assured them that such system was the best and most beneficial for his people. He smiled. Half of his teeth were missing.
That example about the Indian model is prevalent throughout third world countries including most of the Middle East and much of the Mediterranean countries. Lebanon and Shweir are no exception. It is sad that because of such practices, they are still third world countries. Corruption and bribes stifle the economy and growth for entire communities and countries in order to pad the pockets of a few corrupt officials.  The impact of the recent Civil War did not help matters either. 
Perhaps that would help explain why in 1922 Shweir had over one hundred pages guidebook and in 2000 we have less in the form marketing and commerce?
This can be our wakeup call and a golden chance to turn things around. If our newly elected officials truly want to propel Shweir forward into the new Millennium, they will be our heroes and the entire town and its people and especially those community leaders and elected officials would benefit the most.
Which of the above three economic models would the Shweir leaders like to work with?
We pray that they will choose the right one for Shweir. If so, they will have the support of thousands of Shweirieh and we would be on our way to transform Shweir to become, as some of the Matars put it, “Arouse Al Masayef” and a model of a success story.


The following are copies of the original messages:

“Change: Is it plausible or merely impossible?”
Posted by Hilda from Tennessee on October 13, 2000 at 17:57:20: 

Yesterday, I was asked: have you ever tried getting a project done in shweir ?
The answer to that is a little more complicated than I expect. I remember the time when my dad was trying to get a building permit and all the hassels associated with that. Then I remember, the little volunteer activity that I got involved in with the church organizing the " Ta'awnieh " that was put together in the church's basement with other youth.
That volunteer activity ended with a lull in the fighting and the hope that university classes that resumed will not be halted again, and our lives will go back to normal... That was in the Fall of 1976.
We, as a group, were thrilled to be together and had successfully done a project that helped many. We celebrated by having a picnic at the Sarfad, and I still remember the very delicious and spicy Armenian meat pies ( lahm b'ajeen), the tabuleh etc. as well as the time we spent talking about all kinds of things... It had gotten a little cool, but other than that it was picture perfect.
That Fall I also taught in the intermediate school and earned my first income ever from outside my family circle...I felt closer to the community since up until that time, we were more visitors than actual dwellers.
People will kindly make the excuse for not knowing who I am because my family lived away from Dhour el Shweir(in Brummana and later in Beirut) most of the time. Visiting relatives 3-4 times a week not withstanding...
Anyway, despite the war, the falling shells on the town, and the sadness that resulted after that, I still have good feelings about being a part of shweir for that time.
Now as I reflect on how many people would actually be there, if the place ,country , region etc. were not in turmoil, and do not have the kind of corruption that people even back home complain about( yet all are helpless to change) I wish that maybe all of us who do share a better visions of the place may somehow act in unison to reclaim to that part of the world what we enjoy abroad...
I mean how hard is it to stem out the tradition of corruption when everybody really resents it and would rather do without it? Obviously that tradition is deeply rooted, the economic and social realities don't make it easier, either. But what also stops anything from happening is the feeling, among our generation at home and abroad that no matter what we do, things will stay the same...
The question is: Can a change in our mindset result in a change in reality? ie if we were to believe that "yes we want to make a difference back home to the better", can we as a group based on our abilities -not necessarily monetary-influence the state of affairs back home?
As for the monetary help, I for one still own property back home, my family pays the taxes on my share and I am sure many others are like me in the same boat...So we, whether we acknowledge it or not, continue to have stakes in shweir...As such, can we affect any kind of reasonable change from such a distance?
That is the challenge and the question...

Posted by Ihsan Bou Sader in New Zealand on October 13, 2000 at 19:07:49:
In Reply to: Change: is it plausible or merely impossible? posted by Hilda on October 13, 2000 at 17:57:20:

You see that you need your own Column?
Well I agree with all that you said... in fact in NZ we have a large number of third generation Shweirieh etc... And some yime "in funerals we lament if only we were all in Shweir what a difference it will make!
Once it was said "all it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing". How do we then change the apathy how do we transform the man?
Only through education and higher thought. When, that happens then people get paid according to what the economy will provide "Shelter, clothing food, education, health, retirement" unfortunately in Lebanon you are paid on the assumption that you are going to make money by bribes!
Therefore the perception becomes reality.
So the education should aim to lift the perception of Shweirie to higher plane and then their reality will follow.
At the moment we are scattered but on the right time we should all go back and help rebuild the Perception and the reality.
In the past we had Harrier, and Tanback in addition to the Building and Education to day we have the Goubeh! We need to change that by creating Cottage Industries or other type of Wealth generation in Shweir . Then people would stay and we can solve the perception.
Thank you Anwar and George and Hilda and Nora for this opportunity to share with other Shweirieh some thoughts...

Posted November 7, 2000

When I first created the first web pages, the blank pages looked so naked.  I wanted to write things to fill the pages that had some meaning and value to entice readers to join in and take action.   I gave each page a most suitable topic and wrote a brief intro.  On some pages, I kind of began a dialogue on things that related to me personally.  I remembered when my aunts, who lived in San Francisco, get excited about receiving a letter from Shweir… only to be disappointed by the little info that was inside.  It seemed the letters were of similar form to a generic and “safe” letter that did not say much.  The content of most letters went something like this:  “Hello, how are you?  We are fine.  We pray to God to keep you in good health and happiness to you and your family.  Sorry, we did not write sooner because we were busy… Everyone here says hello.  Goodbye for now”.  My aunts would be upset that everybody wasted their time and folks back home wasted a stamp on a letter that said nothing.  It was duplicate of letters that were sent five months ago, a year ago….etc.  They began to wonder if this was an example on how poorly they managed what little money they had or was sent to them. 

With these thoughts in mind, I tried to set the tone by sharing personal experiences and at other times I wrote dialogues as if I were talking to my best friend.  Initially, I kind of felt as if I was out there on a limb, baring my soul to the world. 

 Although there was that uneasy feeling early on, it felt good afterwards especially when people began to respond so positively and send pictures, share their memories, participate on the Bulletin Board and take an active role…

If I were to write a wish list of the kind of people who would take an active role, I could not have described my wish list any better than what we have now in person of our al Mukhtaar, George Matar, everything I said about you in The Power of an Idea and a Team; Acknowledgement   apply even more so today.  There is no need to repeat.   To our talented Editor-Columnist Hilda Sawaya, you make the web pages come alive with your refreshing, innovative and relevant topics and articles. You and George are setting beautiful examples about getting in touch with our feelings and expressing ourselves in a positive and mutually beneficial way. Your instinctive talents coupled for your love and dedication to Shweir and Shweir.com, your openness and sense of humor are beyond any wish list.  All our visitors have to do, is read Shweir Bulletin Board or their columns (on this page) to get a glimpse on what I am talking about. I look forward to reading the updates and postings and I get so tempted to respond to many of them only if I can spare the time.  

Recently, Rabih Khoury, with his IT (Information Technology) background enhanced many features of our web site including a new and more sophisticated Bulletin Board, eShweir greeting card and a few bells and whistles.  A very warm Shweiry welcome to Rabih.    Rosalie, bint Adib Touma Sawaya in Brazil, thank you for making your 1922 Shweir Book available to feature on the web.  You can access it from Home Page by clicking on the appropriate square.  Nora Matar Moujaes, we love your poetry.  (you can access Nora's Poetry from the appropriate square on the Home Page. 

Ihsan Bou Sader all the way in New Zealand who will be sending computers to Shweir... and Dr. Klee with her Wisdom in Australia

A special acknowledgement to you, our readers, many of you volunteered to assist.  You enhance this journey to help make the star of Shweir shine even brighter. 

Thank you Hilda, George, Rabih, Rosalie, Nora, Ihsan, Walid, Naji, Ghassan, Mike, Fouad, Hana, Klee, Matar family,  all of you who participated on the Shwier Bulletin Board and signed in our Guest Book...I can go on, but I need to complete and post the next update...  

Anwar George Kenicer 

Posted October 15, 2000

While I was reading the Bulletin Board, our Shweir.com columnist, Hilda, suggested to feature a segment written by the webmaster.  I am happy to oblige.  here it is.  

Two quick announcements:  
One:  is that I am recovering from the Love Bug... Computer Virus... Love Letter...Luckily, I managed to catch it in time before it infected all my files.  Big time setback.  Accordingly, I now urge everyone to update your anti virus software by downloading the updates off the web and do not open suspicious attachments.  
Two:  I will be going out of town to Seattle for a few days and wish to make this update before I leave town.  

since time is short, I will write in more depth for the next update.