Ice Creamer, Part 2

XIX. Despite twenty years of strict Islamic rule, prostitution still exists in Iran. In some areas of downtown Shiraz, I think it was, for example,…


Ice Creamer, Part 1

I. Something very special about air travel: the way it bleeds fear into your soul. The tightening of the stomach. The queasiness. The hands around…


Ghost Queen

My quest for outré culinary excellence certainly did not begin with the standard fare dished up to us hapless fucking sheep strapped into our seats…


Love You, Zyra, Part 4

VII. I spent some hours in Karachi on my own. What a fucking dump. Christ. Siddiqi had gone off with some very unsavoury-looking characters to score…


Love You, Zyra, Part 3

VI. Now. At 3:30 in the afternoon, we ambled as a group, in single file, up a foot-path which skirted a mountainside. There were about 40 of us in…


Love You, Zyra, Part 2

IV. Closer. We caught a bus that took us into the foothills of the Pamirs. By now, I’d gone quite native and had put on my all-purpose Islamic grey…


Love You, Zyra, Part 1

I. Trouble at Gatwick Airport. And JFK. Make that Heathrow. What the fuck does it matter? Anyway, there was talk amongst the check-in staff that I…


Wavelength, Part 4

XIV. Adolf was already waiting outside the art-house cinema box office when I arrived. He looked smaller than I remembered, and, on his own, without…


Wavelength, Part 3

XI. Speaking directly into the tannoy, he made his pronouncement. “Take this bitch from this place and circumcise her according to the very letter of…


Wavelength, Part 2

III. A month after that, and I found myself in the heart of the spiritual state of Israel: in a little piazza surrounded by charming stone-built…