Christian O’Brien - September 1936
Extracts from a letter to his mother

The journey between Beyrouth and Damascus takes three hours by fast car and consists entirely of crossing the Lebanon Mountains. Remember the Cedars of Lebanon of the Bible.

Fortunately, it was a moonlit night so that we could see something. We climbed steadily to 6000 feet around hairpin bends and winding mountain roads. Below us Beyrouth lay ablaze with electric light and truly magnificent.

The mountains were grim and forbidding though somewhat softened by the moonlight. At the top of the pass they towered up above us to a height of 11,000 feet. I cannot describe my feelings on that trip – they were too weird – I only wish it had been in daylight. We reached Damascus at 9.30 and were deposited at the Orient Palace Hotel – a truly magnificent structure with lofty rooms and beautiful bathrooms.
----- Our Lord knew Damascus and here are the same asses as He rode still being ridden in the same way.