What does the future hold for Putin?

He will manage a pub in Jerusalem, wedged between a shop displaying the star-spangled banner in its logo and one in Jamaican colors.

Putin Pub Jerusalem

Posted in Israel, Photography, Politics, Russia, Travel | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Pro-tip: Don’t ever return to the Office!

When you return to the office after six years of retirement (due to the Iran story, as you may remember) to say hello to the few surviving colleagues, you will also meet the gentleman whose name would simply be “Q” in certain movies. “We still have the briefcase with your personal effects. Do you want to take it?” he will ask.

If you are cleverer than me, you will say “no thanks,” for unlocking that briefcase will unlock the spectre – or should I say the SPECTRE? – of the past, the memories long buried, with all the glory and action that you miss, but also the tension and heartbreak that it took you years to cleanse your dreams of.

spy suitcase

After a brief look, I closed the briefcase, took it back to the depository and decided to let that can of worms remain closed forever, or at least I will find time to write that book. I am not going back to work. Life as a hobo is far too relaxing, interesting and satisfying.

Don’t ask any questions, I can’t answer them anyway.

Posted in James Bond, Life | Tagged , | 4 Comments

For once, the right people went to prison.

A friend in Iran took this photo of the prison at Shushtar, pointing out the freedom-celebrating graffiti on the wall and the mural of Iran’s previous and current Supreme Leader, Ruhollah Khomeini and Ali Khamenei. Prison is exactly where they belong.

prison Shustar Iran

Not wishing to end up in the above prison, the photographer prefers to remain anonymous. After my own experience with Iranian prisons, I can understand that.

Posted in Iran, Photography, Politics | Tagged , | 1 Comment

A Palace for the Sick, the Lame and the Ailing

“No more hotel rooms available? No problem, I don’t mind staying at the hospital,” one might be tempted to say in Venice if one knows what the local hospital looks like.


And this is only the rear entrance. Because to the front entrance, the wounded visitor is delivered by boat.

Ambulanza ambulance boat Venice

(Auf Deutsch.)

Posted in Health, Italy, Photography, Travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment

My office for the next two weeks

office Ammerthal

My last two weeks in Europe will be spent in Ammerthal, the small and not very spectacular village in Bavaria, where I grew up. People think Germany is a civilized country, but there isn’t even any shop that is open on Sundays.

Posted in Germany, Photography, Travel | Tagged , , | 22 Comments

Mass Graves in Europe

Three years after the European Union won the Nobel Peace Prize, we have mass graves in Europe again. But it’s easier to ignore them now, because this time they are at the bottom of the sea.

In a laboratory at the University of Milan, scientists go through the gruesome task of trying to identify the victims, a scene which we last saw after the wars in Yugoslavia.

milan mass graves

Posted in Death, Human Rights, Italy, Politics | Tagged | 4 Comments

Don’t fly away now!

To the people in that plane: You picked the wrong time to fly away. It’s so beautiful here in autumn.

autumn colors trees plane

That’s why I will spend two weeks in Germany before flying to Gran Canaria and then taking the boat to Brazil. OK, admittedly, it’s also because I still have a lot to prepare and many articles to write.

(Photographed on a walk from Ammerthal to Amberg in Germany on 31 October 2015.)

Posted in Germany, Photography, Travel | Tagged , , | 5 Comments