Of the 1,000 plus books, CDs and movies I have amassed as my own private library over the past 15 years, I estimate that at least 10% of my collection is devoted to biographies.
I love to learn about other people, not because I am looking for tips to become rich and famous, but I am curious about how they overcame the obstacles in their lives.
My love of biography follows me outside my study and into the world around me.
I love to hear people´s stories.
(“Every man is my superior that I may learn from him, just as I am superior to every man that he may learn from me.”)
When I travel I instinctively seek out people and places with a story to tell.
Travel makes my book/film/music collection increase, for it is one thing for a Rough Guide or Lonely Planet to tell you you MUST see site X, but for me a place comes ALIVE when you read the literature, hear the music or see a movie of that place.
Paris has the Eiffel Tower. All the guidebooks say “Visit”, but combine what your senses see with memories of a story where lovers meet once a year in the Tower Restaurant or images of James Bond (Roger Moore) chasing May Day (Grace Jones) up the tower staircase or recall the Duran Duran soundtrack to this film (A View to a Kill).
What is Paris without Louis Armstrong crooning “La Vie en Rose“, without the movie Hugo, without the Hunchback of Notre Dame or the Phantom of the Opera?
How exciting it is to think “Here this happened.” or “Famous person X was here”.
How thrilling it is to feel past and present meet. Here tears were cried, hopes were realised, dreams were dashed, love was shared…
And every day here tears, hopes, dreams and love continue in a never ending continuity of life.
When I see the humanity of a place then I finally feel connected to that place.
Perhaps that´s why we feel as strongly as we do about the place we call HOME…