Dispatch from Florence
by Slava Borisov -- 19/May/2016 23:00
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be a Renaissance man. You know, the guy who can do many things well: speak foreign languages, play musical instruments, dazzle his conversation partners with obscure bits of science trivia, and light up dinner parties with tales of his travel adventures – all with the verve and panache of someone who knows what life is all about.
Dispatch from Lisbon
by Slava Borisov -- 10/Feb/2015 05:00
It was definitely not a great start to a city visit. Pressed down by a heavy pile of blankets and comforters, I was coughing almost non-stop. The cold that I had attempted to shrug off before taking a plane for Lisbon was now in full force and non-negotiable. I had a headache and something nasty clumping in the back of my throat. Worse, I had no painkillers or anything similar that I could take. A rather naïve suitcase packer, as it turned out, I had put all my first-aid-type things in the suitcase I checked with Vueling.
Dispatch from Bucharest
by Slava Borisov -- 30/Jan/2015 15:00
“So I open the door and I see these two guys standing there with…”
“With like a big bottle?” – correctly guessed my companion.
I was recounting a somewhat odd episode that had occurred just a couple of weeks earlier
to a Romanian acquaintance. We were sitting in a tiny room of a Bucharest café/bar
which the acquaintance said she had used to frequent “in her student years.” Located just off the Bulevardul Nicolae Bălcescu (a major avenue), it would have nevertheless been impossible to find without a local, as it was hidden behind two dingy archways, an unmarked door that I would have thought opened to a dumpster room, and then a badly lit stairwell to boot. My companion's face was barely visible behind the thick smoke filling the room.
“Yes! How did you know?”
As soon as I said that I knew the answer myself: She knew because it was one of the oldest scams in the book. In Bucharest, as well as everywhere else. For a moment, I felt the shameful sting of my stupidity more acutely, even though nothing much had really happened in this particular case, as you will soon hear (nothing that I could detect, anyway). But allow me recount the whole episode.
Dispatch from Santiago de Chile
by Slava Borisov -- 03/Mar/2013 20:00
I was walking down the Avenida Libertador O’Higgins today, reflecting on the differences in safety perceptions in various cities. It was late in the afternoon, today is Sunday and Downtown was hot (+31C) and sleepy. And kind of… sketchy.
Dispatch from Paris
by Staff -- 30/Jan/2013 19:10
The city of Paris is about to begin a multi-year renovation of one of its most cherished landmarks: the 82-meter-high Panthéon (5th arrondissement), which is visible from much of Paris, will be receiving a thorough, decade-long face-lift.