Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


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Chapbooks

time-cover-final-smallOne of the best bits of writing is getting a box full of copies of the book.

A rather disheveled courier just braved the rain and the wilds of Astigianistan to deliver the first batch of the print run of my essay on geological time, La Misura del Tempo Geologico.
The box was in very poor conditions, but the books were fine.

The paper version of La Misura del Tempo Geologico is a fine white and blue chapbook.
It looks like a copybook and it feels like a copybook, and it’s just great, because it was designed for schools, for teachers and students.

In less than one month I’ll be facing an audience, talking about the beginning and the end of time, pyramids and dinosaurs, and why evolution is real.

And there will be a pile of these nice chapbooks for sale.
It will be good.


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Himalaya

cover39953-mediumI’ve just had the opportunity of browsing a copy of Philip Parker’s Himalaya, and I’m absolutely impressed.
The subtitle – The Exploration & Conquest of the Greatest Mountains on Earth – gives a good idea of what’s to be expected.
But the quality of the volume is surprising.

The book, published by Conway, is an absolutely gorgeous, one-stop reference on the geography and history of the Himalayan chain, featuring concise but nicely varied chapters on the major topics and a selection of great images.

Mountain climbers provide extra contents by remiscing on their experiences, while specialist authors cover geology, geography, politics and related topics.
The foreword is by Peter Hilary.

Himalaya is available both in hard-copy and in digital format – but I guess a color-able ereader or a tablet are indispensable to appreciate the graphic contents of this book.


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Deep time and History

OK, so this is my blog, here I talk about my passions.
Now, passions are interesting, because once you start along a certain path, once you develop a deep interest in a certain subject, it starts popping up in the weirdest places.

Like this…

it2004In the august of 2004 I was in Florence for the 32nd International Geological Conference.
I had some research to show, some people to meet, it was my first big night on the town.
Held on the hottest days of the year in the most expensive town in Italy, the conference was an unmissable opportunity for a freelance researcher like me – well worth the expenses, and the less-than-confortable hotel room 50 kms from the seat of the conference.
My mother contributed with money from her pension to my trip and participation.

The 32nd IGC in Florence was seen by many as the first big international outing for Chinese geology – and certainly the Chinese presence was impressive.
Among the many show-pieces of the Chinese area at the conference, was a huge geological map of the Himalayas and Transhimalayas, a big colorful map taking up a whole wall. Continue reading