To The Lake: A Balkan Journey of War and Peace

Kapka Kassabova is taking us back to the Balkans.

I’ve been looking forward to something new from this wonderful writer since Border, which was my top travel read of 2018.

That earlier book touched on the author’s childhood in Bulgaria, and To The Lake takes us deeper as she journeys to her grandmother’s place of origin in the mountainous Macedonian lake district.

Hitler’s Scientists Put Men on the Moon

V-1 and V-2 rockets at the Nazi’s Peenemünde Army Research Centre

The second-largest island on Germany’s Baltic Sea coast is a summer vacation paradise. But it once housed a massive secret weapons program that the Nazis hoped would allow them to snatch victory from the closing jaws of defeat.

Cut Stones and Crossroads

Cut Stones and Crossroads by Ronald Wright

Ronald Wright traveled Peru in the 1970’s and 80’s, fresh from university with a degree in archaeology, feeding an obsession with the Inca Empire sparked by a random adventure novel he’d read in his teens.

Happy Canada Day

 

Happy #CanadaDay2020 to all my friends and family back home.

One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned in two decades of travel — having lived in 3 other countries, and traveled and written about close to 80 more — is that we’ve got it very good back home.

Geographies of memory shape today

The St. Lawrence downriver from my hometown, and the islands I knew…

We talked about ‘spirit of place’ in my last blog — locations and landscapes that hold an almost mystical resonance for each of us. We connect to such places on a deep level. They feel intimately familiar even when visiting for the first time.

Do you believe in the spirit of place?

The desert is my personal landscape — what’s yours?

The novelist and island writer Lawrence Durrell believed we are each aligned with certain places.

This is where we do our best work because we resonate with the Spirit of Place. 

Hands up everyone who does this

Put a bookmark here…!

It’s been brought to my attention that I might be somewhat strange.

Surely I’m not the only one who rotates their bookmarks?

It’s not as though I collect bookmarks.

I’m not a member of the International Friends of Bookmarks, either (yes, that’s a real thing).

Why worry about things you can’t control?

“But Antoine, why worry about things you can’t control…?”

My last blog on conspiracy theories sparked an interesting discussion on Facebook.

My friend Nathan pointed out that I failed to draw a clear distinction between all too real large scale actions perpetrated by governments and the sort of “Lobby of the Unhinged” conspiracy theories I was talking about.

What do you think of the ‘deep state’?

Spies everywhere…

A friend asked me this week, “What do you think of the ‘deep state’?

The short answer is, “I try not to.” Mostly because it has no meaningful impact on my life.

‘Deep state’ is the idea that some sort of shadow government made up of rich, powerful actors wields power, either within or behind the legitimately elected government.

Words That Piss Me Off: The Sequel

Words That Piss Me Off: The Sequel

I never would have guessed when I sat down to write Words That Piss Me Off in March 2010 that I was creating a smash hit.

Many of the words and phrases which sparked that furious rant were irritating proliferations of business English that made their way into daily use.