Many Lebanese have spent as much time as possible indoors this winter, protecting themselves from this year's unusually brutal cold season.
ANKAWA, Iraq -- When Suhail Louis left the sectarian violence of Baghdad a year ago, he thought he would find comfort in the safety of Northern Iraq. Instead, he's faced with a new discomfort: unemployment.
Today he lives in Ankawa, a predominantly Christian town just outside of Irbil. The town has seen the arrival of more than 5,000 Christian families since the beginning of the war. His new home offers safety, but little more.
Should he learn Kurdish, the local language, to improve his employment prospects here? Or should he study English in case he is able to migrate to North America?
The 43-year-old Arabic-speaking engineer cannot stop reminiscing about his home city -- the hustle and bustle, the culture, his once-good life. Even if the past eight years have been fraught with danger, it was still home.
"Where is better? Here or Baghdad?" Louis asks rhetorically, as he sits at a cafe in the middle of the afternoon, the slow-paced life around him seeming to remind him of his own life on pause. "In Baghdad there was a future. Here, the future is unknown."
SULAIMANI, Iraq -- On a sunny afternoon in this quiet city in northern Iraq, a young veiled Muslim woman from Baghdad kneels to pray -- at a Catholic church.
The church keeper, a woman also from Baghdad, enters the sanctuary and welcomes the visitor.
"Don't worry, pray in your own way," she tells the visitor.