Desert Island Discs

Okay, I know I’m a late comer to this, but boy am I enjoying Desert Island Discs. For those of you who don’t know, it’s a radio program that has been running on the BBC since 1942. In each episode, a (famous) person chooses eight tracks that they would take with them to a desert […]

The musician’s hand

It’s hard to believe that I, a shameless book nerd, a lover of libraries and the written word, a proponent of public spaces and exhibitions, yes, me, it is hard to believe that in all my times living in and visiting London, I have never been to the British Library. So yesterday I went to […]

Unexpected joys of learning a language

Learning a language is hard. There’s no getting found that fact. After two years of living in Croatia and studying Croatian, sometimes it feels like I know nothing at all. But then you have unexpected wins. Little flashes of understanding that make you smile. I was standing in the queue to buy a couple of […]

Faithless in Zagreb

The blue caterpillars that are the Zagreb trams snaked past us, but we barely noticed as we walked along Ilica toward Šalata. Faithless was playing tonight and nothing else mattered. Going to see a gig in Zagreb is always an experience. It’s never quite what you expected. Šalata is a curious venue. Like other venues […]

Song of the Lark – Willa Cather

“Song of the Lark”, Willa Cather; (Kindle edition), 1915 Review – A worthy American classic I’m ashamed to admit I’d never heard of Willa Cather before picking up this book. She’s an important classic American author – but somehow I’d missed her entirely. And, in fact, I may still have never heard of Cather if […]

Dada Cultural Bar – Sofia

Pink bus!

Coming home from dinner one night in Sofia we walked past a cool little bar. It looked like a band was just about to start so we popped inside for a beer and a listen. We’re normally pretty rubbish at finding all the ‘cool places’ in a city but lately we’ve had a string of […]

One Street in Madrid

Swing dancers, San Fernando Mercado

We’ve been in Madrid for two weeks now and in that time we’ve become intimately acquainted with our street… and not much else. In our defence, our street has a small supermarket, a grocery, a churros factory (!), an alimentacion which is open late (for sneaky late night tinnies of cold beer) and several bars […]

Here I Am, Here You Are

Can’t remember what happened last time? Read the first parts of the story here: One: Parking in the Rain Two: A Doorway Three: The Party At the end of voting on part 3 there was a tie. The choices were: She took a deep breath, closed her eyes and started to sing. (36%) She took […]

Jinx at Tuskanac

Jinx at Tuskanac

We went along on Tuesday night to the special 20th anniversary performance by Croatian band Jinx at Tuskanac. I’m amazed at how well Croatians can turn any space into a stage. This is normally a basketball court on top of a parking garage. By the time the sun went down (and we’d had a few […]

Sprung diddly ung

Without banging on too much in the land of cliches, can I just let you all know that spring has sprung-diddly-ung and it’s absolutely marvellous! Twelve hours of sunshine, warm sun, bright sky, cold beer. Before you know it we’ll be back at the sandpit bar laughing at kids falling over. We stopped for a […]