Chittagong, February 2002

I lie awake for a while listening to the shouts in the corridor grow louder, jump when other residents fall against the door or turn the handle and begin, mistakenly I hope, to creep in. Munnu has a sixth sense for these occasions and growls viciously enough to receive a muted apology before telling me not to worry and go back to sleep. I obey.I love this place. Love it. Like a ciné film, my mind runs through my adventures, my travels, my new friends, my horrors, and I realise for the first time since my arrival, I am truly at home in Bangladesh. I feel almost comfortable here. On this day, the 16th February, I have, in effect, fallen in love. “Oh, would you ever listen to yourself? Cop on and stop being a sentimental old twit.” I mutter out loud, grin to myself in the darkness, and dream spiritual...
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PUBLICATION - NEXT WEEK!

FRIDAY 15th OCTOBER2pm (UK time)Finally - well, the launch of Simon always had to take priority - the publication date for A Blonde Bengali Wife is less than a week away!The first event is on 15 October and that is the cyber launch. It's an all-day blog event where people can stop by and post comments/questions about me and the book--and I'll answer them. The owner of the blog will pick one person who made a comment to win a prize which will be a copy of the book.This event starts at 2pm our time so I'll make my first "appearance" as soon as it starts and will keep checking in throughout the day.  So please visit the site, join me there. leave a comment or ask a question - and offer some plain old moral support!Visit the blog now for an idea of how this works. Be sure to read the blog post and the comments that...
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Rangmati, February 2002

The simple reason for the soldier’s reluctance to let me enter Rangmati, he describes with obvious relish and Munnu—I know him well enough by now—picks over and selectively interprets for me. Unfortunately, the soldier is unaware of this nicety and punctuates Munnu’s narrative with ghoulish gurgles and throat-cutting antics.“He says that yesterday there was a kidnapping. Ten Bengali men are taken from their microbus. Two are found unharmed. The others are mostly still missing.”“Mostly?”“One is dead….” Observing the soldier’s garrotting motions, there is no need to ask how death occurred. “…And one injured.”“Injured how?”Munnu, pained at my insistence, finally yields. “His fingers and toes are no more attached to him,” he admits delicately. Chittagong suddenly looks very inviting, so inviting I think we should go straight there. I have an abrupt urge for a large, bustling city with a pleasant waterfront and access to a tropical beach. A place that is...
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ABBW Website!

Courtesy of LL-Publications we have a website up for the book..... We can even take pre-orders so if you feel inspired.....http://www.ll-publications.com/bengaliwife.html
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Srimangal, February 2002

The land stretches to infinity, silent and lush against the setting orange sun, the peace interrupted only by the crunch of tyres and the soft thud of falling fruit as Hasina discards the last of the skins into the dirt. The path bends to the right where wrought iron gates sweep round a circular drive. A perfect, green lawn and flower gardens surround two white-washed bungalows. A bearer in spotless white makes his regal way down the steps of the main house, opens the car doors and stands respectfully back. Mr Habib, the estate manager, follows in casual contrast. I have joined the cast of A Passage to India. On the veranda, varnished cane chairs and small tables are strategically placed for shade and view, and gas lamps are lit as the evening falls. As the crickets emerge, punctuating conversation and drowning the mosquitoes’ whine, we sit back and admire the gardens; extravagantly...
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