Iceland, the eccentric country

One in particular stands out among several unusual instructions given to new arrivals renting cars at Iceland’s Keflavik airport. ‘Please, always park your car facing the wind’, says the impeccably charming, smiling woman behind the desk, ‘never with your back to it’. Apparently, they have a significant problem with tourists who ignore this request, park […]

Gaudí Lows and Highs: Sagrada Família and Bellesguard

Why is the world so crazy about Antoni Gaudí? His architecture is Barcelona’s number-one identity-badge and calling card, even ahead of its football club, for Gaudí-mania seems to reach even those lost souls who still respond to the name Lionel Messi with blank looks. When I was back in the city a couple of weeks […]

What Three Michelin Stars Mean: Flocons de Sel, Megève

The food gods have been kind. Last December I went to a one-off meal prepared by star Mexican chefs and René Redzepi, for some years number-one chef in the world. And now I’ve eaten in one of the most recent recipients of three Michelin stars, Emmanuel Renaut’s Flocons de Sel restaurant near Megève in the French Alps. […]

René Redzepi’s contribution to the Dinner for the End of the World, 21-12-12

21 December 2012 was supposed to be the End of the Great Mayan Calendar Cycle. Everybody seems to have heard that, and that somehow this was supposed to mean the end of the world. Global attention was briefly focussed on the Yucatán in particular, where the local powers-that-are, feeling they had to do something, put […]

On the eve of 2012: reading Maya Cosmogenesis by John Major Jenkins

Here in Mérida everyone is on tenterhooks waiting for the big day tomorrow… well, no, actually most people seem to greet the idea with a snort and treat it as a big excuse for a party, or just doing something else special. In the meantime, not wanting to be narrow minded, I’ve been reading a book […]

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