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Bruce Douglas Reeves's Blog

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Proud Fisherman: My Father
“As honest as a glass eye.”  My father said this about a certain politician when I was a kid.  I’m pretty sure he’d say it today, too.  He had strong opinions about everything, especially politics. Each week, he sat at our oilcloth-covered kitchen table with a shoebox in which he...
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Proud Fisherman
My father worked hard all his life.  The work changed over the years, but it was always physical, usually dirty, and always hard.  And he never gave up and never quit.             During the election campaign of 2012, I thought a lot...
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The Words
Read.  Work.  Never give up. The oft-repeated wisdom for anyone who’s serious (or hopes to be) about writing.  That’s “serious about writing,” not “about being a writer.”  It’s the work that matters, right?  The writing.  The words.  It’s not glamorous or romantic...
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Charles Bridge, Prague
“The world is going to Hell.”  We’ve been hearing that for so long, it may seem surprising that we haven’t got there yet, but plenty of people have been there and some would say they still are.  For many folks trying to exist behind the Iron Curtain, everyday life was a kind of Hell. That...
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Damascus Souk
Deir-Ez-Zur in the Syrian desert, near the Iraqi border, not so many years ago: a modern hotel filled with muscular, sunburned American men working in the oil fields.  A few European businessmen were staying there, too.  No other Americans, except us.  Each evening, shirt sleeves...
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Interhotel in Prague
Getting off the train in Prague in 1988 was stepping into a Kafka story – or a film noir of dark streets, decaying buildings, aggressive shadows, and a constant suspicion that hidden eyes watched.  The old train station near the top of Wenceslas Square spilled us onto a flight of grimy steps...
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Bulgaria village scene
Why, people ask, do I wander the world?  Why do my wife and I spend time in other countries, seek out places that are different from those we’re used to and are comfortable in?  To start with, traveling gives us perspective.  As we engage with the world, we come to realize that our...
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Cuban dancers
       The acrylic Coke bottles brazenly alternating with inverted Havana Club bottles couldn’t help but snag the attention of passersby.  It was just one of the paintings, drawings, handicrafts, and other works of art being hawked by their creators at the weekly...
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Yazd, Iran
       Yazd: let me tell you about Yazd.  It’s unlike any other place you’ve ever been, a magical little town in the heart of a country that may be hit with bombs at any time.          Ghostly spirits move along the narrow,...
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Students at Persepolis
  Not many people from the West visit Iran these days, but not long ago quite a few of us were – and were warmly welcomed by Iran.  Even though women entering the country had to be covered in either a long coat called a manteau, plus head scarf, or a chador from top of head to foot, they...
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Aleppo Citadel
        Flames have destroyed the ancient souk of Aleppo, burning medieval storehouses, countless small shops, a hammam, and once elegant courtyards.  The troops of the Syrian president-for-life and the desperate rebels determined to end his...
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Dancing at Kurd Engagement Party
        As we left the cliff-side town of Artvin in Eastern Turkey, we passed a pair of life-sized statues of ferocious looking, massive-shouldered bulls squaring off opposite each other.  Unfortunately, we’d missed the bull wrestling matches that are popular...
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9th cen. church, Eastern Turkey
         My new book DELPHINE takes place partly in Turkey, one of my favorite countries of the Middle East -- or anywhere, for that matter.  On my third trip to Turkey, I explored some remote areas in the eastern part of the country.  One morning,...
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