Spain’s untranslatable secret to lunch

Spain is a country in love with food, renowned for everything from tapas to trailblazing chefs to simple, elegant recipes that have endured for generations. So ..

A mystifying city with 225 names

The historical Oldehoofsterkerkhof square in Leeuwarden, the capital of the province of Friesland in the Netherlands, is a striking muddle of the weird and the ..

Where being nice is the law

It was mid-afternoon on our second day living in Hawaii, and I woke up groggy from a much-needed power nap. I stumbled into the kitchen where my girlfriend was ..

Are Lithuanians obsessed with bees?

In mid-January, the snow made the little coastal town of Šventoji in north-west Lithuania feel like a film set. Restaurants, shops and wooden holiday cabins all..

The secret to never being late?

Circles don’t get much respect. They are the pariahs of geometry; round pegs in a world of square holes. Western culture has little good to say about the circle..

The country with the ‘wrong’ name

Ice hockey is not usually my thing. However, while at a bar in central Helsinki watching Finland play Canada, I was absorbed by the atmosphere. Ice hockey is on..

Is Singapore suffering from FOMO?

I’d only been in Singapore a few months when I had my first experience of kiasuism. It was a Saturday afternoon and after a couple of hours exploring the shoppi..

Europe’s last pagan nation

In mid-January, the snow made the little coastal town of Šventoji in north-west Lithuania feel like a film set. Restaurants, shops and wooden holiday cabins all..

The invisible lines through Switzerland

It was one of the shortest train rides I had ever taken: just 10 minutes and one stop from the Swiss city of Neuchâtel. Yet when I disembarked in the small muni..

An ancient word no-one can translate

It was spring when I reached the end of the world. On that mid-September day it was cold and raining in the city of Ushuaia, Argentina, but the sky cleared as I..

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