In the early 1900s, my paternal grandfather, Maroun Kassab, planted close to 200 olive saplings in the southern Lebanese village of Ain el Delb, just east of the biblical city of Sidon. His home sat among the young trees, and every day he would wake up before dawn and carry buckets of water from his well, tending to them one by one. This backbreaking work lasted years before the roots were strong enough to sustain the plants. From then on, the trees depended on Baal, the ancient deity of fertility, rain, and dew once worshipped by the region's indigenous inhabitants, the Canaanites. But although the trees were watered by the heavens, Jiddi, or Grandfather, still pampered them, trimming off the dead wood, pulling out weeds, and nurturing the soil.