I was walking in the vast forestland of Grunewald the other day, accompanied by someone who grew up in East Germany in the days of DDR. She spoke of how she was taught Russian in school but has now forgotten most of what she learnt. After losing the ability to remember her Russian education, she… Read More Germany & the Anxiety of Remembrance
‘Ich hätte gern die Rechnung’, I asked, shakily. The girl behind the counter giggled. ‘You’ve just asked me for whipped cream,’ she said, ‘but I suppose you’d like to pay.’ Before insulting the German public with my lack of linguistic skill, the first phrase I decided to learn prior to my trip to Berlin was ‘Ich… Read More Lost in Translation: my grapple with the German Language
‘When it rains, think of us as we walk under dripping trees or through small rooms lit only by storm’ – Fugitive Pieces, Anne Michaels. One of my earliest memories is of being lost in a field near my family home in the country. It was Summertime. I remember the heat and the tall grass… Read More Re-writing the self: Thoughts on memory
It’s World Down’s Syndrome Day, and I wanted to write something to honour my younger brother Joseph and raise awareness for his cause. As of 2018, a new advanced test for Down’s Syndrome, (Non-invasive prenatal testing) will be rolled out to about 10,000 women per year who are considered to have a higher likelihood of… Read More World Down’s Syndrome Day: my brother, Joey.
“Thought for despair? No! I am part of a living struggle. And without struggle, there is no movement, there is no life.’ I was reading in the Guardian recently about the Kenyan novelist Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o. Admittedly, I had never heard of him. Ngũgĩ was imprisoned without trial for a year in 1978, during which… Read More Language as Witness: Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o on his Kenyan heritage
In no particular order, five books that have had a lasting impact on me. Heaven’s Coast: A Memoir – Mark Doty A memoir of complete integrity. The first book to ever make me cry. Heaven’s Coast is a heart-wrenching account of Doty’s partner’s battle with AIDS. From diagnosis to death, Doty describes his lover’s body… Read More 5 BOOKS YOU SHOULD READ
12.03.18 And where to find a friendly face In a city I do not yet Know how to love. Some days are not that exciting: Often you wake up and the clouds are heavy with rain. Sightseeing doesn’t seem all too appealing. You’re saturated with information from countless museums and exhibitions. You’ve met that same… Read More What People Don’t Tell You About Travelling: