UK travel 2

Still in Cumbria, wandering around the beautiful countryside. It is truly amazing what kind of different noises one can hear: instead of near absent cars there are huge arguments and constant discussions going on in those surrounding fields: cows and particularly sheep seem to have a lot to talk about and I have never realised […]

UK travel 1

This year’s focus is on the UK and it started with a visit to Manchester, followed by a short stay in Harrogate en route to the tiny village of Crosby Ravensworth in Cumbria. Glasgow will be next, then a short visit to Dublin. Manchester has always been very interesting to me: one is still confronted […]

The Services

The comical genius of Peter Kay is nowhere more prevalent than in this relatively unknown episode of “That Peter Kay thing” titled ” The Services”. The often utterly shabby and depressing state of some of the UK’s motorway service stations gets a comical workover here by Peter Kay, who plays 5 different roles here. British […]


I have been an ardent reader and admirer of Austrian writer Adalbert Stifter for most of my life. Thomas Mann summarised Stifter’s qualities in one remark: “Behind the quiet, inward exactitude of his descriptions of Nature in particular there is at work a predilection for the excessive, the elemental and the catastrophic, the pathological.” And […]

Ugly delicious

A fabulous, quite revolutionary food show on Netflix. One of the central ideas behind it is the questioning of “authenticity”. Rather than adhering to some illusive authentic standards David Chang suggests far more creative tactics. Hence he finds the best Pizza in Tokyo, which is far from the Italian original… A fascinating ride questioning perceived […]

Opus 92 and interpretation

The difference between real Beethoven interpretation and merely efficient, instrumentally accomplished playing can be studied by listening to Carlos Kleiber and the Concertgebouw Orchestra when compared with the WDR orchestra and Jukka Pekka Saraste. Although the WDR orchestra is a good band, the energy and rhetoric that comes from this concert is over vast stretches […]

D 566 and Nasedkin

Franz Schubert’s piano sonata D 566 in e-minor is virtually unknown. It is an unfinished 2 movement work, but contains some of Schubert’s most special music within his sonata output. And there is one exceptional recording with beautiful LP sound by Russian pianist Alexei Nasdekin which I have held in highest esteem since I heard […]

The woman with a broken nose

Now I was lucky enough to see my second film with Nebojsa Glogovac in the leading role, by director Srdjan Koljevic. And it reminded me quite of “The constitution” which I had seen recently here in Oslo in the cinema. Nebosja Glogovac is again the center of the film and his acting alone makes it […]

Art, Fiction, & History

Fascinating discussion about W G Sebald, one of my favourite German authors in the 20th century, whom I had the privilege to exchange some letters with shortly before his untimely death. Sebald considered himself a sort of ‘exiled’ writer, but more in the context of “The Emigrants”, the title of one of his books, as […]

Speedy Death

A fabulous find on You Tube ! One of the greatest, though not really that widely known Golden Age crime writers was Gladys Mitchell. Due to my rather unhealthy obsession with classic crime novels ( they make up more than half of my library, many in precious first editions with their striking dustjackets ) I […]