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She-ra is NOT a pickle

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I had bought a jar of pickles, and I devoured one after the other: And then it dawned on me, how in English there were two words for one and the same thing, just in different states like water and ice: cucumber and pickle. One is a fresh vegetable, the other one has been stored […]


(ancient) ruins

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I woke up at five thirty in a hotel room, looked out of the window, saw that it was raining in the dark, and went back to sleep. When I started walking it was already nine thirty, the rain had stopped, and the road was very quiet: There was a dead dog in a puddle […]


a tyrant who hides and a beggar who doesn’t

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When I started walking in Gori I turned to the north, towards the white mountains in the distance: And when I had left the city behind me, I continued walking in that direction for another half hour or so: It was then that I realized that I wasn’t going to find him. Stalin. He had […]


The Price Of Independence

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Gori is so small that you really can’t walk around without passing Stalin every once in a while: So today I walked past him, and I went through a few back alleys with some weird graffiti: And then I reached the fortress: It was on a hill in the center of the town, and when […]


Stalin’s birthplace

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Both my pairs of long pants were in the laundry, so I went out in my shorts with a pair of long johns underneath: It looked ridiculous, and children would point at me in the street, but at least I didn’t have to go far – the Stalin Museum was only a few blocks away: […]


viruka

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The good news: My big fat winter sleeping bag was with me, so the night hadn’t been too cold for me. The bad news: everything was wet. The tent, the sleeping bags, the therma-rest – it was all covered in dew: I decided to start the day with some sightseeing. So I bought a ticket […]


1-1-0-0-0

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For some odd reason, this had been a formidable night. I felt refreshed and happy when I got up and went to the kitchen to boil some water for my tea: Nino and Nugsari, the owners of the guesthouse, showed me a place with pictures of their son Ramazi, who had been hit by a […]


just as lost

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The world was still wet, but at least it had stopped raining. So I said goodbye to one of my favorite churches ever and got on the road: It was quiet. There was hardly any traffic. There were hardly any people. Even the villages seemed empty: Once I saw a cross by the roadside: And […]


what I found in a flame

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The rain had never really stopped. And it was devious, too. Sometimes it would pause for a few minutes, just enough for the puddles to become still and for the people and the dogs to come outside again: But then it would start all over again – drip-drip-drippity-drop as if there was never going to […]


different views

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I was staying in a guesthouse that was nice and warm and very close to the cathedral, and it was even supposed to have a view. Only not so much from my room: Outside, it was raining in a determined way: So I stayed in my room most of the day, and only one time […]


churchorama

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There was a monastery on a hill overlooking Mtskheta. It was called Jvari, and I had seen it before, first on the map and then with my own eyes when I reached Mtskheta. So today I took a taxi up the hill to check it out: The view was like something out of an Austrian […]


the end of a journey

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The tiger. He destroyed his cage. Yes. I left the apartment at about ten in the morning: Got the Caboose from her garage, loaded her up, and got on the road. Tbilisi was doing its best to show that it was a big city: I passed a monument of some horse-riding dude: And then, after […]


TLW posters?

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When I went back to the tailor to pick up my pants, sure they had fixed them. But I figured I probably needed to buy a new pair sometime soon anyway. The problem was simply that my pants (along with the rest of my things) were getting old. And so I decided to make some […]


turtle lake

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Went back to the building that had been closed a few days earlier. And today it was open: It took me a while, but I got done what I had come there to do. Then I waltzed out and into an underpass that was – like many underpasses in Tbilisi – full of art: Y’all […]


to love is to suffer

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Went to the old town of Tbilisi today. Entered it through a little underpass with some graffiti: Then I was in the alleys that felt narrow and grey: I know I keep saying this, but they often reminded me of certain East European capital cities: Maybe Budapest or Prague: Before the restorations: Only some of […]


clouds on fire

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Remember the hole in my pants that I had just gotten fixed a few weeks earlier? Well, now I had a new one in a different part of my pants: I took them to another tailor, and I sighed. Sometimes it felt as though everything was slowly coming apart. When I got back to my […]


messages

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Went to this building today: It was closed. Apparently I had not gotten the memo. Then I walked around aimlessly for a while. There was a graffito on a wall that I found interesting without fully grasping its meaning: Someone had done terrible things during specific years in history? Some of the dates seemed to […]


Adventure Time

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It rained all day today. So I stayed in, and I didn’t go outside to all the butterflies and bees. Instead I sat on the couch and watched Adventure Time, which turned out to be a weird show that was weirdly entertaining. It reminded me of Futurama in that the writers seemed to be completely […]


the couch that overlooks Tbilisi

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Sometimes being up close is good. Sometimes it’s not. Today I decided to scoot back a little bit and get an overview of the city. So I went to this old neighborhood at the foot of a hill: A set of stairs led up to a vantage point above the buildings: And I found the […]


my tree

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There was a tree next to the house I was living in. It stood in a parking lot, overlooking a part of the city, and it had a branch from which I could hang in order to stretch my back. I tried to visit the tree every day: After a while I noticed that I […]