We've Nearly Made It
Hello and Welcome!
AS OF AUGUST 2016 A BLONDE BENGALI WIFE AS MOVED TO ITS NEW HOME ON MY WEBSITE AT http://www.writerightediting.co.uk/
HOPE TO SEE YOU OVER THERE!
Where you will learn everything you
need to know about the progress of A Blonde Bengali Wife, the travel
book I've written about my love-affair with the fabulous country of
It's a blog about Bangladesh, about Bhola, and about fiction
and creative writing in general...
A Blonde Bengali Wife:
First published in September 2010 and launched in October 2010.
Reprinted and re-launched in November 2015 as an eBook available from Amazon UK/.com
#1 Amazon Bestseller
Follow it on Twitter @AnneHamilton7 and @Anne_ABBW and Goodreads
Saturday, 30 October 2010
Sunday, 24 October 2010
More details as we go along, but in the meantime, I'll get back to finishing the story of the book. Tomorrow that is, Internet signal permitting from the depths of Suffolk where Simon and I are staying for some serious baby-worship from family and friends!
*if you haven't received one but would like to come, please leave a comment here - if I already know your email addressit's a baby-brain induced oversight
Friday, 22 October 2010
Friday, 15 October 2010
buy it on
Wednesday, 13 October 2010
“Meat for the freezer—in case there is not enough to share from the slaughtering tomorrow.” Hasina marches towards the stall.
It is like seeing a road accident. The meat is hanging from canopy hooks attached to rusty scaffolding, and carcasses crowd the front of the stall like an obstacle course and passing by without getting a slap in the eye from a swaying piece of mutton flank is a laudable feat. Bloody off-cuts—skin, bone, offal, hairy ears, and glassy eyes—litter the floor. Hasina directs this dismemberment and supervises its stuffing into a jumbo-sized polythene bag or six.
It is heaven for the fat flies taking first pick of the goodies. Some settle on the hanging meat, valiantly swatted by a young boy with a witches’ broom, but the majority indulge in an uninterrupted gastronomic experience feasting on the cut pieces, crawling languidly over the diced meat destined for the Hoque family deep freeze like a holiday maker at an all-inclusive resort who cannot resist temptation.
Three fine specimens have been so gluttonous as to die mid-mouthful and are gamely gouged out and flicked away before the butcher slings the meat into a bag. Let’s revise that: two of them are gouged and flicked, the third I’m sure is now somewhere in a 5kg bag ready to be marinated in yoghurt, herbs and spices, and roasted on the barbecue. Luckily, I don’t have time to be sick. I am too morbidly fascinated by the hand of the man brandishing the knife. He has the tips of three fingers completely missing.
Eid is a real family occasion, one I was lucky to spend with my adopted family, the Hoques, in Dhaka where we flew from house to house greeting and eating... Everyone kills (or buys) a goat or a cow and shares it amongst themselves, their relatives and anyone in need. The sentiment is great but the public slaughter is not for the faint-hearted...
Tuesday, 12 October 2010
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 dreams of fried eggs and roti.
Needless to say, in the morning, my moment of truth, of peace, of contentment is but a memory. I awake scratching frantically. My left shoulder, arm and entire back are covered in raised, angry, red lumps already irritated by my scraping nails and brewing horrible, infectious pus. Where there are miniscule gaps, the skin is black and blue with tender bruising from too many jostling rickshaws and buses.
Awkwardly I shower, and then cover myself with every cream, unguent, spray, and liquid I can find, swallow double the recommended dose of antihistamine, and pray for a plague of locusts or whatever is the appropriate member of the food chain to descend on the entire mosquito world.
It was that moment when it all came together: the place, the people, the work, the travelling, and I had one of those rare moments when I was exactly where I wanted to be. It was then that I knew I wanted to maintain a long term relationship with Bangladesh - and to let people at home see this 'other side' of the country, the bit where life goes on despite (or even in the midst of) flood, famine and monsoon aadn most of all, rather than being different, human beings are much the same, with similar concerns and challenges and joys, the world over.... too simplistic? I never knew it would end in a book and, more importatnly, that the book would inspire a charity.
Saturday, 9 October 2010
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 follow....
Look forward to 'seeing' you there...
Friday, 8 October 2010
“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.”
“One is dead….” Observing the soldier’s garrotting motions, there is no need to ask how death occurred. “…And one injured.”
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 safely in the opposite direction and full of people who will want to stare at me, perhaps even stroke my hair and ask me to marry them. What they will not want are my body parts as souvenirs.
I open my mouth to demand immediate expatriation to civilisation, and stop. The tableau of rolling hills, winding roads, the dazzle of the sun turning the ripples in the water silver, that early morning slant of light promising a glorious day, is the most perfect image I have ever seen.
Naively, I refuse to believe that anything bad will happen to me here.
Stubbornly, I refuse to waste the opportunity to drink in more of this Nirvana.
Politically, I refuse to give in to terrorist threat.
And, fatalistically, I refuse to give up on my mantra: regret the things you do, not the things you don’t do.
Clearly I wasn't kidnapped, murdered or anything else but scared out of my wits for a couple of days, which was incongruous with the beautiful surroundings, and not helped by the fact I was staying in an underground room and over-stayed my welcome by a nerve-racking 24 hours... Rangmati is also memorable as being the place where Munnu and I forged a firm friendship that has survived years and miles since. If there is a hero in the book, it is Munnu.
Sunday, 3 October 2010
Saturday, 2 October 2010
Friday, 1 October 2010
If ever there was a ready-made title for a book, then this had to be it. The furthest thing from a true Bengali wife - I had (have) neither the poise, the behind-the-scenes determination or the flair for homemaking - but the honorary title stuck; everyone knew I was trying hard.