I have recently travelled around Germany reading from ”Ist es noch gut, für unser Land zu sterben?” Had interesting discussions and generally enjoyed the hospitality of the organisers.
It actually started in Basel, which of course is in Switzerland, not Germany. Before my reading event, friends invited me for tea at Les Trois Rois. As a special treat they arranged for me to see the room that was used by Theodor Herzl during his 1897 stay in Basel for the first Zionist Congress.
Occasionally things did not go to plan. The purpose of a reading tour is to promote book sales. I was therefore, not amused when on reaching the venue in Baden-Baden, I was greeted by the local bookseller who proudly showed me stacks of the… wrong book. Would I be willing to sign them?
To continue with my trip, I had planned to take the train, then I saw it and took up a friend’s offer to travel by car.
On reaching the northern town Kiel, I was greeted by a poster that invited me to an open day at the Crematorium. Bizarre is the friendliest word I can come up with.
The German term is Tag der Offenen Tür, which translates to Open Door Day. I wonder what happens if a not so young member of the public forgets or has not noticed that the Open Door Day ends at 16:00, and stays longer? At 16:00 sharp the efficient caretaker closes the door…
From there to Mainz where I had to correct the misnaming of my book on a blackboard outside the event’s venue. They decided to change the name of my book to “Lohnt es sich noch …” instead of “Ist es noch gut…”
The one question that is repeatedly asked after such reading events is why the book has not yet been published in Israel.