July 22, 2014, Tuesday afternoon -- Reading Massih Hutak

At a cafe over a canal (in Amsterdam, where I'm on vacation)
The cafe is not far from the university she attended (which is in the building of the original Dutch East India Company!!!)  She used to come here with school friends.

She's reading (in Dutch, because she's from the Netherlands...) Toen God Nog In Ons Gelofde, or in English, When God Still Believed in Us, by Massih Hutak.  It's a novella, written by a friend of a friend.  She started it at the cafe that morning and she's been engrossed in it all day.  She finished just a few minutes after we finished talking.  (I love books that can be read in a single day.  The last one I read was Heart of a Dog, by Bulgakov.)

Her favorite book is a book of short stories by the Dutch author, Tommy Wieringa, called Reisverhalen, or, in English, Travel Stories.  In one story, a woman's husband dies and she decides to spend the rest of her life on a luxury cruise ship.   The stories, she said, are surreal.