09 October 2015

Book Review: The History of the Siege of Lisbon by José Saramago

This is yet another enjoyable book from José Saramago. Having read 13 books of him before, he is definitely one of my favorite authors, and this book doesn't fail to deliver. Touching on topics that range from history, historiography, as well as the siege of Lisbon in 1147, and love when one is middle-aged, this book definitely is at times comic and profound, written in typical Saramago fashion.

The book centers on the life of Raimundo Silva, a simple proof-reader who is also a middle aged bachelor, lonely, and living on his own. He has a cleaning lady that comes regularly. He pays for sex every now and then, even though these encounters aren't satisfying either. In short, the most boring character one can imagine. This aspect of the book, having a main character that seems like the most ordinary person on earth, is quite typical of Saramago's novels, as can be seen by the main characters of his other books, like Tertuliano Maximo Afonso in The Double and Senhor Jose in All The Names.

07 October 2015

Tantalized in Thessaloniki: The Thessaloniki Cityscape

Remember that back in May, I went to Greece for a conference? I was in Thessaloniki for a couple of days, and I did take an extra day for myself, so that I could explore the city for a bit. So I arrived two days before the conference, and had a full day by myself, exploring the city. As I said before, I had a good impression of Thessaloniki, which was a city full of Byzantine treasures. The people were also friendly and going out and about the city, which somehow didn't suggest that they had a financial crisis at that time. Anyway, this post shows you some of the places I have been to, while the following posts will focus on the major sights that I have seen during that brief stay.

05 October 2015

Rude and Elderly

Sometimes, I see elderly people here in Berlin who just does things that make my head shake. You know, one would expect rude behavior to come from young folks who haven't been properly socialized yet, but sometimes, rudeness can actually come from the elderly, who seem to act like they have a huge sense of entitlement. I have seen so many instances of these from elderly people here in Germany, that I really think something is up.

03 October 2015

Berlin Boogie: Tulip Festival in Britzer Garten

Britzer Garten is a very large park located in southeastern Berlin. Until earlier this year, I knew this garden exists, but I never really visited it. Until a friend of ours proposed that we visit the Tulip Festival, that apparently happens every Spring.

01 October 2015

Book Review: Grimus by Salman Rushdie

I guess everyone has to start somewhere, right?

While I have read several other novels by Salman Rushdie, which I loved, this one, which is his first published novel, just doesn't seem to make the cut. I have to say that this novel didn't give the best reading experience for me, knowing what his other books were like. It's not my most favorite Rushdie novel, and therefore if this book were the first novel of his I have read, I probably would not have read another Rushdie book. Hence, I am glad that my introduction to Rushdie's work was by way of four other novels, all of which I definitely enjoyed way better than this current one: The Satanic Verses, The Enchantress of Florence, Midnight's Children, and Shalimar the Clown.

So what is Grimus about?