So boring, so backward – a child migrant’s view of her adopted country

I sat beside her on the train, noticed her hands shaking like a sycamore leaf. Outstretched, sturdy but still shaking, clasping her paper cup of Starbucks coffee. The train was shaking too. A great, grey rattlesnake clanking its way through the Canadian countryside. “Does the landscape get more interesting?” I asked. “No,” she asserted. “It … Continue reading So boring, so backward – a child migrant’s view of her adopted country

“At last, I am free” – a visit to the National Museum of African and American History and Culture

  I stroll past Trump International whose tycoon owner was once accused of denying homes to black applicants. Moreover, in an attempt to oust the first African American from the Presidency, he persisted with the racist fantasy that Obama was born outside the USA. I mutter Michelle’s words, “When they go low, we go high. … Continue reading “At last, I am free” – a visit to the National Museum of African and American History and Culture

A dream deferred is a dream no longer – Dedication Ceremony for the NMAAHC

I pass a stall holder doing a roaring trade in Black Lives Matter T shirts, badges and carrier bags featuring the President and First Lady. A limousine drives past and a cheer, as in a Mexican wave, ripples through the crocodile of people weaving along the Mall. Barack and Michelle wave through the limousine’s black … Continue reading A dream deferred is a dream no longer – Dedication Ceremony for the NMAAHC

A boarding pass to a new life at Bremerhaven Emigration Centre

I stroll along the quayside at Bremerhaven from where 7 million people left for the New World between 1830 and 1974. I am heading for the German Emigration Centre that  won the European Museum of the Year Award in 2007. I enter a spacious modern building, framed in lattice wood. The receptionist hands me a … Continue reading A boarding pass to a new life at Bremerhaven Emigration Centre

A town within a town -Ballinstadt Emigration Museum in Hamburg

I peep through a porthole over Hamburg harbour just as many migrants must have done when they left for the New World over a century ago. But unlike the migrants I am on dry land in my cabin-inspired room in the Hotel Hafen Hamburg, previously a seafarers' home. The hotel is decked out with seafaring … Continue reading A town within a town -Ballinstadt Emigration Museum in Hamburg

Louisiana, Libeskind’s Labyrinth and the Jews’ escape across the Sound

I meander through a maze of narrow, winding passages framed by walls of huge grey slabs. They entrap me; slope and slice across my path; disorientate me. There is no mistaking the architecture. It has to be Libeskind. The design is a miniature version of the Jewish Museum in Berlin but encased in the old … Continue reading Louisiana, Libeskind’s Labyrinth and the Jews’ escape across the Sound

Church bells yes but not the Muslim call to prayer

I walk past a bland housing estate and through a tidy shopping mall. There are no Turkish kebab shops or Indian curry houses; no Vietnamese mail parlours or black hair dressers. Why would an Immigration Museum be housed in this unremarkable part of Denmark? The town of Farum, a 30-minute train ride from Copenhagen, is … Continue reading Church bells yes but not the Muslim call to prayer