Against Autumnal Depression

27 October 2010 | 16:33 | English | Leave a comment
Videostill - barraca in MaputoRode my bike home in the pouring rain - autumnal depression nearing.
Then I saw this film. No comment necessary. How I miss Maputo!


Book Launch with Urban Africa Present

25 October 2010 | 12:40 | English | Leave a comment (two)
Susan from Jinja by Skype at the launch party of Gin-tonic & Cholera (picture Ingrid Meurs)How urban is the African city dweller? Last night I presented my new book Gin-tonic & Cholera, on city life in Africa, in a sold out Melkweg Theater in Amsterdam. We talked about how urbanisation changes people's lives. I'd gathered my African city friends. Nigerian Boye, bank employee in Ibadan, explained by phone how he juggles tradition with modern life. He only wears his traditional agbada, a sort of pyjama suit but then a hunderd times more elegant, at weddings. On his free time he dresses in jeans and t shirt and listens to R&B. And Susan from Jinja shared through Skype that she didn't see the need to get married right away, even though she is 29 years old. In the village she would have been seen as an old spinster already, but in town she can afford to be picky. She'd rather have no man at all than one who's no good, she stated. The Angolan rapper Das Primeiro, flewn in from Luanda to perform at the launch party, talked about the connections between the cities he lived in: Zwolle, Amsterdam, Lisbon and Luanda.
Order Gin-tonic & Cholera at Bol.bom - in Dutch (sorry!)

Magical Moment

18 October 2010 | 22:35 | English | Leave a comment
Gin-tonic & cholera... and vinho verdeIt was a magical moment: tonight I finally laid my hands on it, the result of three years of work. Gin-tonic & cholera, my book on city life in Africa, has appeared! A book that smells of paper and ink with a cover picture of down town Luanda that tantalizes the imagination in a way that makes me feel like reading my book again. But not right now: tonight I am celebrating the victory at home with my loved ones and a vinho verde. This is one party they can't take away from me. Tomorrow Gin-tonic & cholera will be available in the book shops and at bol.com. (Sorry folks, just in Dutch for now)

Melkweg Presents: Gin-tonic & Cholera

14 October 2010 | 12:16 | English | Leave a comment
Launch party Gin-tonic & cholera @ De MelkwegDe Melkweg launches Gin-tonic & cholera on October 24. Main characters from the book from Nigeria and Uganda will be interviewed on Skype. There will be a debate on urban Africa with besides the writer Femke van Zeijl Volkskrant reporter Rob Vreeken and rapper Das Primeiro from Luanda. Photographer Caro Bonink exhibits pictures of the Angolan capital of Luanda. The launch party will end with performances of Das Primeiro and music by DJ 360. There will be African food for sale by The Ostrich African Catering. All in all it promises to be a festive as well as serious tribute to modern urban Africa.
Sunday October 24, 17.00 h, venue opens at 16.30 h, De Melkweg, Amsterdam
Order tickets for 5 euros trhough TicketService - don't wait too long because it's selling out fast!