The Hakawati, as the storyteller is commonly known in the Arab world, would become the centre of attention for many people who were not necessarily diligent readers of print fiction, but rather keen listeners to storytelling. Inside the café, you would smell different kinds of tobacco flavours like the pure Latakia tobacco, called Timbak, and also light fruity flavours of Maasel. You will be offered a menu of non-alcoholic drinks the like of which will never be matched anywhere in the world. Damascus Ramadan is known for such widely consumed drinks like tamarind, liquorice, rosewater, and also Toot Shami, the special Damascus berry drink. You would observe the affability and charitableness of the goers to these cafes. People insist on buying each other drinks and Shishas. They also show a lot of sympathy towards each other, a practice which is now so needed as the nation is becoming rife with splits and divisions.
via What Ramadan in Damascus looked like – Your Middle East.