One Year Ago Today

Today was sunny and warm, full of butterflies and bees. Hard to imagine that one year ago, it was so cold that there was ice floating in the port of Konstanz (which rarely ever happens).
At that time, I was musing about Katya, who knows to read the ice, and her brother Grischa, who has a special sense for wind and weather, both setting out from nineteenth-century Russia to make their fortune in the world.
One year later, while spring is settling in, a bit more each day, the outline I wrote in those freezing days is about to become the first volume of their saga.

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Lucky Day

When you´ve finally managed to get to the supermarket after a hellish long day, sulking at first because your favorite sushi is (naturally) sold out at this hour – and then you stumble over salak. Resembling the scaly skin of a snake on the outside (therefore also called snake fruit), a garlic bulb on the inside, they taste like a mixture of not quite ripe hazelnuts and pears.

I‘m absolutely crazy about them and I even mentioned salak in my «Fire Island» novel. Usually, they‘re nearly impossible to get around here – but: Salak. Today. In the small supermarket around the corner.

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A Voyage of Discovery

250 years ago today, James Cook embarked on his first circumnavigation aboard the Endeavour. A voyage of exploration in search of botanical, astronomical, medical and last but not least geographical knowledge that made history and changed the world. An adventure that had already fascinated me since I was a teenager when, at 23, I started working on the manuscript that eventually became my debut novel some years later.

Nathaniel Dance: Captain James Cook (1728-1779) via Wikimedia Commons

All this time, I dreamt of visiting the spot in Hawaii where Captain Cook met his violent death in 1779. A dream that came true four years ago in Kealakekua Bay, when I swam over to the monument erected in his memory.

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