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I’m sure many of you learning Arabic know the word “حبيبي” meaning “my love”. Valentine’s day عيد الحُب or عيد الفالنتاين is right around the corner. Do you happen to have a حبيبي you are planning to celebrate with?
Like many in Amman, Jordan, I grew up watching American movies showing couples having dinner at a fancy فاخر restaurant and exchanging gifts on Valentine’s Day. To many, it is viewed as a Western celebration. Still, in Jordan, as well as other Arab countries such as Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, and Syria, Valentine’s Day is celebrated publicly علناً. Yet, there are also people in these countries who frown upon يعترض على this public celebration of love. It is thought by some to be contradictory مناقض to conservative محافظ culture and teachings. While most celebrate it all throughout these countries, few remain against it.
Right now, in Arab countries, you can find shops filled with roses and red teddy bears all along the streets. Restaurants begin advertising special multi-course meals a week in advance. Roses are even sold to cars at the traffic lights.
How about this year, to show your Arabic language skills, you write a card to someone you love in Arabic!
Let’s look at some words in Arabic related to Valentine’s Day including terms of endearment and what to say to your loved one on Valentine’s Day.
My love حبيبي
My eyes عيوني
My soul روحي
My heart قلبي
Happy Valentine’s Day! !كل عام وأنت بخير or !كل سنة وأنت سالم