Category Archives: Books

Easily Confused (66) Influencer

People who call themselves “influencers”, but don’t influence me at all: What really influences me, although none of their authors would use such a stupid self-descriptive term: Influenza: The last one can be pretty influential, actually. It definitely impresses me … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Language | 2 Comments

“Couchsurfing in Iran” by Stephan Orth

Couchsurfing, staying with hitherto strangers for free, is a good way to get to know a country and its people. It’s even more rewarding in countries where you don’t speak the language and where you are sometimes a bit lost … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Iran, Travel | Tagged | 9 Comments

William Somerset Maugham in a Box

I read a lot, but, with few exceptions, I feel no urge to maintain physical possession of books after having read them. Quite the contrary, I find them put to much better use if I pass them on as gifts, … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Canada, Photography | Tagged | 5 Comments

Random Thoughts (24)

Good news: the days are getting longer. Unless you live in the Southern hemisphere, then you are doomed to darkness. And unless you live on the equator, in which case you are missing out on something fabulous. My sister asked … Continue reading

Posted in Austria, Books, Brazil, Canada, Economics, Germany, Iran, Language, Politics, Religion, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Travel, UK, USA | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“Persepolis” by Marjane Satrapi

I had long been too snobbish to read graphic novels. Cartoons like Tintin or Calvin & Hobbes are great, but when it comes to serious subjects, I prefer prose. Also, I read a lot on trains or in restaurants and … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Iran | Tagged | 10 Comments

A Walk around Tbilisi

Zur deutschen Fassung dieses Artikels. Each year for my birthday, I like to explore a new country, preferably alone. In July 2017, I treated myself to a trip to the Caucasus (and ended up celebrating my 42nd birthday with the … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Georgia, History, Islam, Military, Photography, Religion, Travel, World War II | Tagged , , , | 52 Comments

Brexit Poetry

Everybody knows the line “no man is an island”, but nobody knows that when John Donne wrote Devotions upon Emergent Occasions in 1624, he actually warned of Brexit. No man is an island, Entire of itself. Each is a piece … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Iran, Politics, UK | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

“The Great Railway Bazaar” by Paul Theroux

In 1973, Paul Theroux was a novelist and out of ideas when he came across my blog and got the inspiration for a trip around the world by train. From the UK, he set out to Istanbul, of course, and … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Travel | Tagged , | 7 Comments

“Fear” by Bob Woodward

I am generally not a big fan of reading books on contemporary subjects, because books get better with a few years of hindsight. But for Bob Woodward’s book about the Trump presidency, Fear, I made an exception. Of all the … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Military, Politics, USA | Tagged | 4 Comments

“The Pastures of Heaven” by John Steinbeck

As if I had known how beautiful it would be in Venta Micena, Andalusia, I brought a book about a similarly beautiful valley to read during my stay: The Pastures of Heaven┬áby John Steinbeck. In this early work, first published … Continue reading

Posted in Andalusia, Books, Photography, Spain, USA | 13 Comments