Karl's what?

Karlsruhe used to be one of the most beautiful cities of Germany before the war. Its name is connected to its history. It actually means Karl’s repose and according to legend, it was given to the new city after a hunting trip when Margrave Charles III William of Baden-Durlach woke from a dream in which he dreamt of founding his new city. A variation of this story claims that he built the new palace in order to find peace from his wife.

Tourist in Leipzig

When did the word «tourist» stop being politically correct and was replaced by the word «traveler»? I don’t remember but I am still using it mostly to describe myself during my everyday life. I am always a tourist, whether I go on a trip abroad or when I am walking in old familiar places of my childhood. A tourist for me is a carefree individual having fun and absorbing everything he or she sees, whereas the traveler takes himself or herself very seriously, as if they are doing a job.

The house of Dürer

Albrecht Dürer’s house in Nürnberg is situated uphill inside the old town, near its fortification. Today it is a museum in which no authentic work of the artist can be seen, just copies of his most famous paintings, his wood prints, copper prints and other creations. Still it is worth a visit since the atmosphere of the building, which was only partly destroyed during WWII, resonates with the time when the artist was living here. Thus visitors can learn a lot about his life and his work.

An island without sea

Not because I’m a hundred years old but for other reasons which won’t be of interest to the reader (fortunately not health reasons), I happen to have visited many spas in Germany, both well known and lesser known ones. Baden Baden, Bad Mergentheim, Bad Kissingen, Bad Bocklet, Bad Ems, Bad Brückenau, Bad Nauheim, Bad Kreuznach as well as many others with the prefix Bad, meaning bath, and I’m not sure which is the most beautiful.

Le smanie per il barocco*

When you come from a country not at all connected with the Baroque period, with its art, its design, its gardens, its music and its architecture, to land in Leipzig and the nearby cities is a great pleasure indeed. You are bound to discover so much beauty and enjoy sites like the Gohliser Schlösschen or the Delitzscher Schloss. The latter is an elegant little palace in the town of Delitzsch, which in modern terms is more of a suburb of Leipzig.

Tourist in Geneva

Geneva is less boring than it had seemed to me 27 years ago, during my first visit. Actually this time it looked pretty interesting, what with its multi culti population, the beautiful Lac Leman and its Jet d’Eau, the numerous Chinese and Russian tourists who were shopping at the most expensive fashion stores. Geneva is really expensive, but this goes for the whole of Switzerland, it has always been a very expensive country. That is why the inhabitants of Geneva prefer the super markets of nearby France where they do their shopping during the week end.

The blood of the eel

The scene takes place in one of the southern suburbs of Athens, in Greece, at a fish restaurant by the sea. A Greek businessman trying to export his products to China, is hosting a gentleman from this country. He is about to buy him lunch (I guess). Before they start talking business, the Greek tells the Chinese man that he used to have an eel farm. The Chinese reacts with enthusiasm and answers that his fellow countrymen love eating eel and especially the blood of the eel which they consider good for their health.

The Panometer in Leipzig

Enjoying the last days of the summer in Leipzig, or more aptly, the first days of autumn.
When you live in the centre of the city, you can't really feel the change of the seasons. From my window I can't see green leaves turning red or yellow but the sky is overcast and the people are already wearing more clothes.

In the beginning of September I had some visitors and it was a good opportunity for me to become a tourist once more. Together we went to the J.S. Bach Museum of course and to the Round Corner Museum where the Stasi Archives are kept.


Usually, these lists are made by the end of the year, around Christmas, but I thought I might have a look at what I read so far, from January till September. I am not going to attempt a review or a summary, just a few words about each of them.

1.Kevin Nilon: Living a lie

Autobiography of an Australian and his criticism of the Catholic Church

2.John Green: The fault in our stars

Love story of two young people suffering from cancer

3.Wolfgang Herrndorf: tschick

Two friends in Germany and their strange road trip

4.Kurt Vonnegut: Slaughterhouse five

Berlin is too big for me

After having lived in a big capital almost all my life, I have acquired a taste for smaller places.

Thus I would not choose to live in Berlin, although I find it is a very interesting city.
It has a lot of museums, which is important for me, and a lot of green parks and open spaces, which is important for everybody, I think. There is water all around and this is very pleasant, of course.

But still, although the population is not dense, I find that Berlin is too large for me, surface-wise.