I'm looking out at the tonnes of snow covering my back garden today, and my thoughts drift west, to Langjökull. Langjökull, you say? That sounds suspiciously like the li'l thing that spread volcanic ash all about the place not too long ago, stopping air traffic [...]
What do you think of when you hear Kazakhstan? OK, let's get it over with: Borat. If nothing else, Sacha Baron Cohen did place Kazakhstan on the map. Enormous flat steppes, once the secret home of Soviet gulags and a nuclear weapons testing zone. Also, [...]
As I’m finalising this post, Yerevan has become a happening place. The prime minister just resigned a few hours ago, after several days of protests. According to my blogger friend Megan, who is there just now, the whole city is a party. The police, military, and [...]
In Augsburg’s old town, Grandhotel Cosmopolis is perhaps the most curious hotel in all of Germany; certainly the most unusual I have seen. This particular Grand hotel, you see, functions not only as a hotel, but also as home for asylum seekers, as artists’ studios, [...]
From its foundation in 1386 and until World War I, Heidelberg University had jurisdiction over unruly students. Depending on your misdemeanour, you could land a sentence of anything from 24 hours to 4 weeks in the Studentenkarzer (student lock-up). The most common offences? ... loud [...]
Come with me on an extraordinary journey to a very curious corner of the world. Let's step inside North Korea for a look at Pyongyang and the fabled DMZ.
Reminiscing about a Christmas past today, a Christmas in India. You'll pardon the photos - they're from the days of 35 mm-film in rolls. Remember those? We rarely travel over the holidays. It's a sacred time of sorts - not in the conventional meaning, but [...]