The White Guest

by Weam Namou

My husband in Amman, Jordan (with his niece and nephew)

Last weekend I was unable to get a hold of my husband. He was in Amman, Jordan, visiting his parents whom he had not seen for over 13 years. Finally when he answered his phone, he explained, “The electricity was out. The whole city was shut down because of the snow storm.” Or what his niece and nephew called “The White Guest!”

“What snowstorm?” I asked, clueless that the Middle East, accustomed to oppressive heat, experienced a snow storm that most locations had not seen in over 100 years.

The roads were blocked, residents were confined to their homes, and when King Abdullah II toured the capital to check on the progress of snow-removal efforts, he ended up pulling up his sleeves and helping other men push a car stuck in the snow.

After learning about the storm, my heart sank at the thought of the millions of displaced Syrians living in makeshift shelters, many of their children enduring the cold with as little as T-shirts and sandals for protection.