DrHe is the emaciated singer posing as if he were performing in a stadium rather than in a semi-deserted room. He sings about love, which we feel so little here, in a nightclub in the Syrian city of Raqqa. Dim colored light floods in. Two men sit at a table, not sure if they should keep hoping that something exciting will happen after all. Everyone smokes, no one dances, no one drinks. An artist surrendered. She sits at the end of the room, her face lit up from her phone screen. Another is sitting in a small circle for an exclusive birthday party for men. She is created like a clown. Waiters are very busy. They sell sweat and whiskey. For those who are wise, I see you. If you order whiskey, you get a bottle of “Red Abu Sukho”, which is poor extinguishing water.
It’s yet another night that makes Kanyewar wonder if going back to tenderness and opening a nightclub is a good idea. “You need patience,” he says. Even the place is as famous as the restaurant in Beirut where it worked before. It is preferable to talk about the splendor of those days than about the conditions of Raqqa and the complex conflicts in the region. Maybe he’ll have to wait a while for the big rush. The nightclub seems to be still lost on a dirt road behind the lit streets. Elsewhere, one can talk about the best place. The restaurant is located on the banks of the Euphrates, which is why it is also called the “neighbor of the river”. Kaniwar says he does not understand why not much is being done in the area. Then he talked about the paralyzing insecurity that makes it so difficult for people like him to build something.