Friday, March 31, 2017

The wineries you'll never suspect - In Georgia with the Wandering Writer

And with that I mean the beautiful country in the Caucasus region, the connection between Asia and Europe, the pearl (at least that was from my point of view) of the Black Sea.
We reached the capital Tbilisi in a spring day. The weather was fair, most of the time, so our wanderings could go on undisturbed for the entire length of our holiday.
Tbilisi, being the capital is also the biggest and most populated city, and reflects the economical and political situation of the country fairly well.
It is a country divided between big poverty and richness; in the eyes of the beholder, it seems like the middle class is very slim, then respect the poor, which represent the majority, and the rich, who are the obvious minority.
Since 2003, with the Rose Revolution Georgia is aiming for joining the NATO, mostly I do believe as a way to prevent any possible attack from Russia, which has obviously opposed the process. However, in 2011 Georgia was designed as an aspirant country.
This small political introduction about Georgia was necessary to understand the lifestyle and the country you might want to visit one day.
As I wrote at the beginning the city has a clear divide, between poor and rich, old and modern, which seems to coexist in harmony with each other, as they belong to each other like the limbs of a single body.

Georgia is clearly a country that wants to move on towards Europe and this will is clearly expressed through the architectural styles that characterize the new buildings in the city.
It almost seems as they want to burn the bridges with a difficult past and relaunch not only its own economy, but rewrite its own history; a better one.
Therefore, you might not be surprised to find modern building surrounded by old fashioned architectonic styles, which I hope they will not tear apart, as they are incredibly beautiful and represent anyway an important cultural heritage of the country.
The best way to explore the city and to see this change between old and new, is to have a ride with the cable car to the Sololaki hill.
During this trip you will be amazed by the beauty of the view to the city, and prepare your cameras to take great pictures.

And be prepared also to admire the blending between old and new in a harmony of forms that will make you understand a lot about the clear direction the country is willing to take.
The Sololaki hill, represent one of the best spots to have a walk in the nature and to observe the fantastic view of the city, and in springtime its charm is enhanced by the many blossoming trees, and the peace of the place,

 and perhaps the most important monument of all: the Kartlis Deda, or the monument to the mother Georgia.
This is a very important monument for the Georgian and symbolizes the spirit of the country, holding a cup of wine for those who come as friends and a sword to defend the city from those who come as enemies.
It is a powerful message in its silent and majestic form and gives the sense of calm and peace, yet warning calmly about the willingness of the country to fight by any means whoever or whatever could undermine their independence.

For sure you heard about the wine culture in Italy, France, Spain, and definitely, with the mild climate you might think that also in Georgia, someone is producing wine, but when you go to a restaurant you are perhaps expecting something that is not as refined as the wine from  the main world producers.
You couldn't be more wrong!
The wine in Georgia is a real experience that will make you fall in love at the first sip with a blend of sweet spices, full bodied wine that will entice, excite you and make you sad, knowing that in your country you might not be able to find any of this nectar of the Gods.
The cuisine is another spot on, from the small restaurants to the finer ones, you will never be disappointed. Honest traditional cooking is what you can expect and the care for the customer service is something you really will enjoy.
To give an example, we went to a small restaurant to have a dinner, you know, one of those small places where you might not be able to get more than a beer with your meal. Nevertheless, we asked if they had some red wine, as in the list there wasn't any mention.
The waiter, thought about it for a second "of course, we have it," he replied.
He went to the desk exchanged a couple of words with a younger waiter and we saw him disappearing out of the restaurant.
After a few minutes he reappeared with a couple of bottles of red wine, probably purchased from the shop behind the corner, and guess what, after that our two glasses of wine arrived.
This is something that, at least in my country will never happen, and can't fail to please.
Among old and new, the architecture of Tbilisi has also very curious buildings that are really made to attract your attention, like this crazy clock tower, which it seems coming  directly from Alice in Wonderland, and you could expect to see the White Rabbit coming out of it, in a hurry, jumping around.
Describing Tbilisi in a single blog, or even by words, it is really something difficult, as nothing ever can replace the experience of being there in this vibrant city.
I wish I could give you all the feelings I had as visiting a country that remained in my heart for many different reasons, one of which being the calm and the easy-paced lifestyle that characterize the city. That relaxed pace that makes you reconsider whether it would be wiser to enjoy more life, rather than run every day more and more to produce more than yesterday, being more effective, faster or committed than the others.

For posterity to judge, in the meanwhile, enjoy your life, live it at the fullest and if you can, visit Georgia.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Dōmo arigatō, a Japanese experience never to forget - The Wandering Writer

In this nice spring day, I am going to tell you something about a journey that literally shocked my life:


The land of Samurais, of the cherry blossoms, Geishas, high technology and ancient traditions.
A land that is able to find a sort of equilibrium between a very old cultural heritage and a fast-growing technology.
Our destination and landmark was Osaka, and already as we arrived at the airport, we understood how that would have been a very different kind of holiday.
The organization of the tourist service is very efficient and, on the other hand, everybody seems very eager to help a foreigner, which much probably will find a bit lost.
We could opt for a rail pass, which gave us the possibility to use the train for the entire length of our stay without any restriction. This is something that I highly recommend, because with the train you can go travel the whole country without any problem, saving a lot of time and visiting most of the places.
Be prepared for a cultural shock that will slap your face like a bullet train, and the first thing you will have to face is the language. Regardless the eagerness of the common people to help you if you are lost, it is not said that they will be able to help you in your language, so get ready for an improvised sign communication, and a lot of laughs.
Another thing that might impress you is the pedestrian traffic.
Even the narrowest streets, seem to be crowded, even without people walking through. There is this sense of hurry, perhaps given by the big signs of the shops, that might make you uncomfortable at first, but curious to discover more.
 The city is crammed not just by people, but with everything that can fit, and the pedestrian traffic is something that requires some initial acquaintance. However, after the first two days of roaming around discovering the city, we realized the power of our train pass, and we decided to move around not only throughout the city but outside of it.
Something strange that happened to us was that we were not even able to exchange a single word during the day, and only as soon as we reached the hotel, we finally could take out everything that happened during the day. It was like our brains were too busy to record everything and make a sense out of the apparent chaos made of people, lights, sounds, cars and really whatever else.
One thing I remember quite well was the weather. I have no idea whether that was the normal summer there, but it was very hot. Nevertheless, we didn't let this particular to stop us, and even in the warmest hours of the day, we moved to discover everything possible, so the first stop was to visit the Himeji Castle, located at the top hill of the Himeji town.
The difference between this small city and Osaka was clear, and we were glad to see how more relaxed people looked like.
The Himeji Castle was first built in 1333, but dismantled and rebuilt again in 1346, to be significantly remodeled in 1581, and this to tell you that when Japanese people are not satisfied with the result of whatever they are building, they are ready to tear it apart to rebuild it from the beginning.

The castle can be considered a state of the art in terms of defense, and it was very much advanced for being constructed during the feudal period. On the other hand, the creativity and higher technological evolution of the Japanese people are renowned and this castle is just one of the many examples of it.
Going on, we could not avoid but reach also the lovely city of Kyoto, known for the environmental treaty.
However, as we were arriving by train we were attracted by a tall building close by (or what we thought it was so because by walk it took like forever).
We had no idea what it was because we didn't bring with us any sort of map, but we felt immediately attracted. We found out later that it was the Shōren-in, a Buddhist temple, also known as the Awata Palace.
The first impression we had in that torrid day, after a long walk to reach the temple, was a relieving sense of inner peace. It felt like there was no more hurry in that chaos, everything was as calm as the water of the lily pond.
I felt soothed by the slight movement of the water and enchanted by the many animals living in the temple, and I felt invited to sit down and meditate about the meaning of life and how to reach that peace in my everyday life.
All the rest seemed meaningless, like being transported to another planet, another dimension made of peace and calm.
I am not telling you a lie, when I say that we spent most of the day in silence just admiring the surroundings, enjoying that rare moment of inner discovery.

Regretfully leaving the temple, we headed for another "must visit" in Japan, and that is Hiroshima and the memorial museum.
Hiroshima is located in one of the many islands, but reaching it by train you will never guess you are crossing the sea to reach it.
I will leave the historical facts aside, because just like the rest of the country, its history is quite complex, and I might risk boring the reader who is more interested to know what sort of place is Japan from the tourist point of view.
Therefore, I will just tell you something about the impressions I had as a tourist as I arrived there.
The city was certainly able to heal its scars, yet keeping the memory alive. It seemed clear to me that only by doing so you can finally get over the most traumatic experiences in life. Perhaps this is a good way to remember what we did wrong once and keep in our mind that things like this should never happen again.
As I always believed, history is like our extended memory, and we should learn from every single mistake in the past, what is right and what is wrong.
Unfortunately, this is not always possible, and devastating mistakes are done year after year without learning anything from them.

However, something that will always remain with me about what I saw there at the memorial museum was the reconstruction about the before and after the nuclear bombing in 1945.
That powerful image is something that everybody should stick in their mind, as a reminder of how humanity can fail.

That is the before the bombing and after the bombing, not counting the consequences for all the future generations caused by the radiations. Definitely one of the saddest chapters in human history, and I cried.
Once and for all I wanted to be back to the temple in Kyoto, which felt so far from everything that can be destructive.
The positive thing is, as I mentioned before the ability of the population to get over the past and look at the future, hoping never to commit the same mistake again.

Of course, we could not leave the Mt. Fuji unexplored, and with the bullet train:

 we left Hiroshima on our shoulders and headed towards the northern part of the country, and at 100 km from Tokio, we reached one of the three sacred mountains in Japan.
Call it a mountain is, however, incorrect, as it is a volcano, but since it is considered inactive, (the last eruption has been recorded in 1707) it can be easily included into the definition of "mountain."
The trip with the bullet train was a real experience, the train reached the speed of 300 km/h and it felt like sitting in my home couch.
The vibrations are very minimal, therefore, when I looked at the display and realized that we were traveling at that speed, it made me wonder.
And of course, it didn't take that much to reach the destination (Honshu island) from where we were supposed to take the bus to reach the mountain.
Now, something people might understand is that the weather is not always on your side, and perhaps you are going to visit the Fuji-san hoping to get great sceneries, and amazing pictures to show, or to look back at, and instead, all you get is this:
Yes, I know it was quite frustrating to find a thick curtain of fog, instead of the great clear images, and stunning sceneries, we saw from the tourist brochure.
As a tourist, you might feel a bit scammed, but bad weather is something to consider whenever going for a trip, and so, we got contented to be there.
As it was the time to say goodbye to Japan, we took a look at Osaka from one of the best vantage points, the Tempozan Ferry wheel:

The wheel is 112 m tall, so it really gives you a great vantage point and one of the best views of the city:

And finally, a real goodbye until the next time, and to all of you, I wish a pleasant weekend, wherever you might be or whatever you might do.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Happy St. Patrick's day!!!

Not living in Ireland, it is easy to forget such an important event like St. Patrick's day, and here I come to tell you my experience in Ireland, where the sky changes constantly like a carousel of clouds and light, the grass is "greener than yours" and the beer is thick and tasty.
Yes, my dear reader, Ireland, the land of the leprechauns, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and the sweetness of the clover.
Ireland the green, Ireland the beauty, and Ireland the divided.
I would never forget its melancholic beauty in a winter day, as I arrived there. The first thing we needed to realise, as we reached Belfast was the currency. Coming from Paris, we had some cash, but only euros, and as we went to pay for our first meal, we had our wake up call:
"It is 12£" the guy at the checker said matter-of-factly
"Pounds?" I wondered being sure that Ireland adopted the Euro as currency.
"Yes..." he replied, not sure whether to laugh or being worried.
Then I remembered that Northern Ireland is part of the UK, and as such, they use their same currency, the British Pound.
Indeed, Ireland is a divided country and its history is quite restless, as the result of the battles between the British desire to annex the Irish territories and the desire of independence of the Irish people.
The conflicts between Britain and Ireland together with other internal unrests lasted for centuries, and only in 1998, with the Good Friday agreement, Irish people can live peacefully, yet in a divided country.

Unfortunately, I couldn't be there for the celebration of St. Patrick's day, but if you can, pay a visit to this amazing country; you will not be disappointed. Belfast is a charming city and is the capital of Northern Ireland. Its name comes from the Gaelige "Beal Feirste" or "mouth of the river" and even if it is not very big, you will find it extremely charming. It might have been because of the cold weather that invited us inside one of the many pubs, or maybe because of the friendliness of the people, or the sweetness of the little streets and beautiful country houses that made me want to call home, sell everything and remain there.

Of course, you cannot say you have been visited Ireland, if you don't see also its other part of the sky; the Irish, (non-British) part, and with that I mean of course the capital Dublin.
The city is geographically divided by the River Liffey, which has represented historically also a cultural divide, between the working class (northern part) and the middle/upper class (southern part).

Dublin has a lot to offer to the eager tourist, but if you want to understand the place and keep it in your heart forever, more than being excited with the monuments (which are anyway something to be visited), you should be excited with the pub's life.
During the day, you might be disappointed, but when the sun goes down, the pub is a place where to meet the most interesting people.
The social life turns around the pubs, and they serve as landmark to start the evening with the friends or to make new friends.
As the Irish capital, it keeps high the flag of an intimate and cozy city, something like Belfast, but with a more vibrant accent.

Therefore, something to be suggested is a visit to the Guinness enterprise center, where you can learn about how the famous beer is made and how to pour the perfect pint (you can also get your 'perfect pint certificate).

Of course, if you are going to have the perfect pint at the Guinnes factory, you cannot avoid paying a visit to the Jameson factory, where one of the finest whiskey is produced, and which I am sipping right now.

If you have some time to spend, don't miss the chance of a trip to Malahide village, and its castle. I can assure you, I have rarely seen such a lovely place like the Malahide village, which has a very long history, starting from 795 AD, when the Vikings settled in the area.

Having a nice walk, particularly if the weather is fine, will lead you to the Malahide castle, immersed in the bright green of the park, where to spend a great day, wondering about the times when it was built (12th century) for the Talbot family, which inhabited the castle until 1975 (for something like 800 years).

There is truly something magical in the Irish countryside and in its forests, I have no idea whether it is the influence of the old folk stories that has been told for generations, or because there is really something more. It is like the mystical creatures are still there hiding in the bushes, observing your move, or even mocking at you. 
Maybe it wasn't the wind through the trees the noise you heard, but the whispering of the faeries, or perhaps that cracking sound was a leprechaun observing you, and all of a sudden, the forest seems to take life, besides its natural inhabitants, and whatever you see or hear, it is not what you think it is.
Take care, my friends!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Liberté, égalité, fraternité... and a charming adventure for the Wandering Writer

After some time spent in Africa, even though my heart was yearning to return there, I had to find a compromise with my Africa sickness, and the desire to discover the many beauties in this world. Travelling is not just a question of having a relaxing break from the daily routine. For me, it is finding new inspirations for my books, meeting new and interesting people, knowing other cultures and most of all grow personally and elevating myself to higher knowledge.
Therefore, this time, we decided to explore Europe to discover the jewels around my country, and the second after Spain was France.

Ah, Paris... How to define the hub of the fashion with its history, culture, cuisine and wineries in one single post? It is going to be a difficult task, but I'm in for the challenge.
Besides the city being the capital of France, is also the most populated with its over twelve million inhabitants (if we consider the whole municipality), comprising about the 18% of the population of France.

We didn't really have time to visit every single monument and palace or historical place. However, Paris has a long history that can be stretched until the 3rd century BC; therefore, as you walk the city streets, you are walking the same steps of people that made the history of the country.
You will be walking together with the Celtic Senones, the first tribe who inhabited the area, with the Romans who conquered the Paris Basin. You will be walking with the people who stormed the Bastille during the Revolution.

Paris, just like other historical cities, such as Rome, doesn't require you to visit all the museums; the city itself is a museum, and you can feel it in the air.
As a passionate reader of Georges Simenon, I felt like being immersed in one of the adventures of Maigret, walking along the Seine, thinking about the possible solution to this or the other mystery.
Moreover, as I walked around, I could not avoid but recall all the artists I loved so much during the years of the Art Institute.
The soft beauty of the impressionists, the avant-garde of the cubists or the introspective connection between reality and dream of the surrealists.
The artistic heritage of Paris can still be found in the many artists who, walking the same steps of their predecessors, give a soul to an enchanting city, attracting tourists not simply with the intent to sell their drawings, but mainly to give a dream to bring home.

The non-romantic part is the high pollution of its waters, as periodically the sewerage system of the city might experience failures, and untreated sewage is discharged directly into the river. (Might be wise not to think of swimming there!!).
Nevertheless, sewerage or not, it keeps its poetic beauty, and every picture is a piece of art, framed into a timeless city.

Of course, there are the classical landmarks of the city, those like the Eiffel tower:

The Arc de Triomphe:

The Notre Dame Cathedral:

And last but not least the Louvre Museum:

I know, I didn't have much a good luck with the weather, and if we exclude the first day, it was raining for the whole period. Unfortunately, I didn't think of getting a 'good weather spell' so I was forced to accept whatever it was.
The positive thing is that you can find shelter in one of the many cafeterias, or inside the Louvre, for which you will have to book one entire day to admire all the artifacts and departments.
If I have to be honest, somehow I was glad to have a few melancholic rainy days, so to indulge in the tasting of the many pastries and coffees, being surrounded by the cozy atmosphere of those glamorous cafeterias in the center of Paris.
Maybe sipping a good Calvados, thinking about the many adventures of Maigret or the next adventure of one of the many characters of my novels.
Perhaps, one of them will walk the same steps of Maigret or will be a charming thief, or a mysterious spy.
Whoever he or she will be, I am sure that will be loaded with charm and intensity, delivering feelings that only a romantic place like Paris can deliver.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

The night of the zombie book cover - The W(o)ndering Writer

"It was a calm evening; the sun was setting and she was working in her room.
A brief glance at the clock and she sighed, knowing that, for that day, her job could be considered over. She needed some rest for a whole day work in front of her computer.
She was a writer and her first novel, regardless was a good material and gather good reviews, didn't seem to attract the deserved, or hoped attention.
She switched on the lights and suddenly, from the living room, a strange noise attracted her attention. Her husband was supposed to return in about one hour, so it couldn't be him.
Her mind raced with the possibilities and without moving a single muscle, she remained listening if the noise repeated itself.
Again, that same noise, like someone or something was trying to open the door, or perhaps someone was searching for something on the shelves.
Her heart started to beat faster, yet she repeated to herself that it couldn't have been a thief, and perhaps the noise came from outside.
Trying to be very silent, and going against the voice that screamed inside herself, begging to go and hide somewhere, calling for help, she climbed down the stairs, stretching to have a better view.
The living room was in the semi darkness, but she could see the silhouette of something or someone near the bookshelf.
With trembling legs and shaking hands, she switched on the light as her heart pounded in her chest and the most horrifying creature turned itself looking straight in her eyes...
"AAAHHH" she screamed as she finally realised the horrifying truth behind the poor sales of her novel... A zombie book cover!"

Indeed, a poorly designed book cover can put down the best novel in the world, and I suppose that every now and then, there is a self-published author, who, just like me didn't give the right importance to that detail.
We all know that, we all have been walking along the shelves of a bookshop, looking for the next book to read, discarding those books whose cover didn't attract us.
Yet, we made the same old mistake, choosing the book cover that really didn't sell.
The problem is that we are all so much in love with our new born novel that we are confident that people will go beyond the cover to discover the great adventure inside it.
However, whether this is true to some extent, and perhaps it works better on non-fiction books, for fiction the first thing that sells is the cover, second the blurb (this short description on the back of the book), and then the novel itself.

I have to admit it, the original book cover, was absolutely a disaster, but I have learnt from that, and much probably I am not too late to fix that mistake. Oh well, since it has been ignored, I think it won't make any difference, and much probably, that bad cover is already forgotten by potential buyers who passed by discarding it. After all, they discarded the cover art, not the novel itself. To do that they will need to read it.

I hope that by sharing my mistakes, people who are going to self-publish will find my advice helpful, (of course, ignore this if you have a contract with a good publishing house that will take care of everything on your behalf) and summarizing the necessary steps for a winning fiction book:

1. Write a great story, but this nobody can help because you, the writer, have already in your mind the greatest story ever, and you will know how to put your heart in the paper.

2. Read it through to check for spelling, time frames, consistencies, missing parts, and changes you would like to have.

3. At this stage, you can also ask someone of your friends to be your beta reader, and he/she will go through your story, and give you an honest review on what she liked or not, or where there is something unclear that made following the story difficult.

4. Hire a professional proofreader for the proofread-copy editing of the manuscript. This is a very important stage and you should never miss. The duty of this professional figure is to take your manuscript and make it shine.

5. Hire also a professional to write the blurb. That is a very important presentation card and should be done by a professional who knows how to make sure that the reader, will be intrigued enough to buy your book.

6. Hire a cover artist, This is an extremely important step, as a potential buyer will be first impressed by that cover, and it will mark the difference between turning the book to read the blurb, and eventually buy the book or walk away.

7. Choose a catchy title for your book, ask friends, Facebook groups, other professionals to help you choose the right one.

8. Last, but not least, don't forget that the sales start before publishing. Start your marketing campaign way before the release date. Create a buzz and offer a pre-release sale. This will help your novel to stand out before being released.

9. After the release, market your book as much as possible, and remember that in self-publishing, reaching the success is not a sprint, is a marathon, which lasts forever.

Anything to add? You will tell me your experiences and every comment is more than welcome.

Oh... Are you curious to have a preview of my new cover? Of course, here is it:

Better, isn't it?

Friday, March 3, 2017

Lost in the country of tango and flamenco - the Wandering Writer, dances again

It was an almost obvious choice that after visiting Morocco, we would have been tempted to take the ferry and travel to Spain. And in fact, this is what we did.
The number of sailings from Tangier to Tarifa scheduled daily can be quite impressive, and it should bring into perspective the definition of tourism from Spain to Morocco, not as something to discover new cultures, but as a way to get better deals on the purchase or spend a weekend outdoors.
The ferry stops in Tarifa, but we continued with the bus to Malaga via Algeciras, our final destination. Once again choosing the bus revealed to be a good choice, as we could have a better glimpse of the country, and the different sceneries offered by one of the countries which offer an incredible diversity in terms of microclimates in Europe.
In fact, Spain offers at least eight different climates from the cold desert, cold semi-arid, warm Mediterranean, temperate Mediterranean, oceanic, temperate continental humid, cool continental subarctic (under the Pyrenees) and temperate continental.
This diversity makes of Spain one of the most attractive countries where to live, but soon I am going to give you more reasons that will make you want to quit everything and think about moving in this sunny pearl of the Mediterranean.
I will not spend much time describing the history and the main touristic attraction of Malaga, because I do believe that the real attraction is the city itself, with the great food experience, the friendliness of the people, the mild climate, and the relaxed lifestyle that is generally part of the Mediterranean lifestyle. It is the second largest city in Andalusia and a real pearl facing the Mediterranean sea.
If you ever wondered the reason why people living in the Mediterranean area live longer lives, I can tell you that, besides the healthy cuisine, there is a no-stress way of living. Nothing has to be done necessarily now, and there is no shame in procrastination.
A healthy lifestyle also means that you have to take time for yourself to recharge and have quality time either alone, with your family or with your friends. A life lived only thinking about your job doesnt have any balance and wont make you happy in the long run.

Something I would recommend for a great afternoon, is to get immersed in history, visiting the Alcazaba and Roman Theatre. For me, being an adorer of Roman Empire, it was almost a must to visit, regardless the initial reluctance of my husband (who after thanked me for insisting on going men!).

Alcazaba is a Spanish word that comes from the Arabic and means citadel. It was built in the 11th Century during the Hammudid dynasty and represent a fortification of the original palace. Like any other fortifications, it has been built on the hill adjacent to the coast, and the reason was obviously to have a better vantage point to spot the early income of enemies and be prepared to defend the city.
Nowadays it just offers a great view of the valley and on the adjacent Roman theatre, which was partially used to build the ramparts (what a shame!)
Walking on the streets, you can be tempted to have a stroll on one of the fanciest streets and perhaps fall into temptation for a shopping spree. Not being myself a real shopper, as I do buy only and exclusively what, and when I really need something, I indulged myself in a very inexpensive and amusing activity, window-shopping. This means looking at the windows, maybe going inside the shop to see what they have to offer, and continue without buying anything (I guess the personnel of the shops hate people like me!).
Calle Larios is for this sort of activity, one of the best shopping streets, and can also offer interesting entertainment by random performers.

Being Malaga a city on the sea, could you really avoid and check out La Costa del Sol? Absolutely not, and so we also did and had a lovely afternoon on the beach, sipping a fresh beer and enjoying the sweet part of the deal.

Travelling is indeed a big part of my life, and I always feel restless unless I do not have a flight ticket in my pocket. Sometimes it had been only one holiday in a year, some others I have been in many places, but it doesnt matter whether the destination is an easy and relaxing place or a conflict area with a due load of excitement. What really matters for me it is just getting to know a different kind of people, meeting new cultures, and sceneries that tickle my imagination beyond any boundaries.
Stretching my views over the horizon, meeting something different, unexpected, also unpleasant, sometimes, but all for the sake of the inner growth.
As a writer, I use my journeys as a way to get new inspirations, to find new ideas about the characters I will talk about. It can be the prince of the Maasai, or the little girl who stole my heart in Sierra Leone, or the taxi driver who spoke an amazing English in a place where you would never expect anyone to speak it.
I find my mind, getting lost in the admiration of nature, and perhaps even by describing in this blog my adventures I find a source of inspiration. Moreover, I find this a great way to improve my way of expressing whats inside my heart. I really wish I were able to show you with my words the amazing world inside my soul, but to this only you, my dear reader can give an answer.

To the next time! Stay tuned and have a lovely day!

The long road of writing a book.

Publishing a book is a journey on a rocky path that involves several stages, from writing and pre-editing to editing, formatting, selecting ...