Sevilla and a Nobel Betrayed

  How more like a clear blue sky emerging from the cracks of dawn the Moorish Alcazar appeared in comparison to the dark night of the cathedral. The cathedral of Sevilla – you’re often reminded it is one of the biggest in the world – is politics. Faith is enslaved to the earthly ambitions of…

Why I Started My Budapest Novel a Year Later

Last year, September to be precise, I went on a solo trip to Budapest. I wish I could say I went to Budapest for some deep purpose, like I’d always read about it in stories or I’d seen films based there and felt like I had to go. Reality wasn’t that glamorous. The truth was…

Hunting Duende in Sevilla

    Spain is unique, a country where death is a national spectacle, where death sounds great bugle blasts on the arrival of Spring, and its art is always ruled by a shrewd duende which creates its different and inventive quality. Federico Garcia Lorca     There can only be one reason why an artist…

The Four B’s of Budapest – III – Buda Castle

    A Medieval castle built in the 13th century that was renovated into a Baroque behemoth in the 18th. Buda Castle is the landmark that is most prominent on the banks of the Danube. It controls an eye-catching hill, just across Chain Bridge, and at night is a fortified beacon of soft pride. Nowadays,…

Paris est une fête

  In early 19th century Greece and Athens were occupied by the thankfully-extinct Ottoman Empire. In March 1821 the Greeks revolted against their Turkish oppressors and Athens fell into their hands without a fight. The entire Turkish garrison of the city retreated up the Acropolis hill and barricaded themselves within the most important temple of Western…

An Existentialist Day in Firenze

If you had a day in the Tuscan capital of Firenze – let’s by all means call it by its local name, it’s one of those places that sound better in the local tongue – and you had to choose between spending it shopping or sightseeing: what would you do? I know what you’re thinking….

Poems I Wrote In Salsomaggiore

Sleeping Salso A mosaic of pines in my nose, A morning still in its womb Cradled by the amber moon. Walk in silence, in nothing more, No other wind But the white wind that laps the eye-lashes. Cruelty is still asleep in its braided cage. Improvise perfection with last night’s melancholy In the patio of…

Valencia Streetscapes

Walking, strolling, exploring the urban Barrios of Valencia one discovers a homely city ready to claim anyone’s inspiration. It was said of Buenos Aires that there are fairies dwelling in the streets called Duende that cast a spell on you and ensure you always return. Valencia has its own Duende fairies and they hover and…

On Travel

On Travel “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” Marcel Proust. Being sea-locked on a small, limited island in the core of the Mediterranean, travel, for me, necessarily involves flight or sail. My first flight happened to me at age nineteen – after a lifetime of…