Brussels – March 22nd 2016

Having lived in Brussels for ten years and flown in and out of Zaventem airport on average twice a month during that time, I cannot let today go by without posting about the deadly bombings inflicted this morning in places that are still very familiar to me.

I had been intending this coming Easter holiday weekend to share my thoughts on a movie I have recently watched, the popular Bollywood comedy ‘PK’, which lightheartedly (for the most part) examines and questions various world religions, among them Christianity, Islam and Hinduism. But I feel no longer able to do that. There is nothing lighthearted to be said about religion.

Benoit Violier’s death big news in Switzerland

This morning the Swiss media’s focus is on the death, Sunday, of ‘World’s Best Chef’ Benoit Violier, who was found shot at his home. In the newspaper I read whilst enjoying my morning coffee, eight pages are devoted to the Frenchman, who ran the Restaurant de l’Hotel de Ville in Crissier near Lausanne, where the quick lunch menu will set you back almost 200 U.S. dollars. The restaurant has decided to carry on without their deceased leader. “It’s what he would have wanted,” said one of the management.

In other Swiss news, peace talks are again underway in Geneva to try to end the civil war in Syria, and end the suffering of millions of civilians in besieged and starving towns such as Madaya.


German lesson

For those among you who read German I just came across this absolute gem of a sentence. It’s grammatical structure is amazing!

‘Ein seitens der Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe zum Transport der vorläufig Festgenommenen zur Verfügung gestellte Bus wurde wiederum durch Täter des linksautonomen Spektrums angegriffen und erheblich beschädigt.’

Here’s a very basic translation:-

‘A bus made available by the Leipzig traffic authority for the transport of those arrested was in turn attacked and substantially damaged by members of the leftist Spektrum group.’

You can read the police report from which this impressive sentence came here

Angela Merkel invited me

I have friends who recently emigrated from the Czech Republic to northern Germany in the hope of a better education and life for their chidren. Their timing could not have been worse.

Cologne New Year’s Eve violence

Short Story ‘Bad News’ published on NoiseTrade Books website

Today I published my short story ‘Bad News’ on the NoiseTrade Books website. Download it for free here. Formats available are Kindle, Epub and Pdf.

Charlie Chaplin’s speech from ‘The Great Dictator’

Charlie Chaplin’s impassioned plea for brotherhood and goodwill at the climax of ‘The Great Dictator’.

I think you can guess the relevance to yesterday’s events in Paris.

Amazon cloud service outages in Northern Virginia …

Instagram, Vine and Netflix hit by Amazon glitch (Source: BBC). Apparently there are problems at an Amazon data center in Northern Virginia. Interesting, what other big data center could we think of that’s also in Northern Virginia?