You-are-there reading

I’ve never equaled the sensory verisimilitude of my friend Adam, who once read the ninth book of the Odyssey, in Greek, in what is believed to be the Cyclops’s cave, a Sicilian grotto Homerically redolent of sheep turds. But I have read Yeats in Sligo, Isak Dinesen in Kenya, and John Muir in the Sierras. By far my finest You Are There hour, however, was spent reading the journals of John Wesley Powell, the one-armed Civil War veteran who led the first expedition down the Colorado River, while I was camped at Granite Rapids in the bottom of the Grand Canyon.

– Anne Fadiman, Ex Libris, “You Are There”

Reading the Latin correspondence of Abelard and Héloïse
at their tombs in the Père Lachaise Cemetery in ParisHeloise and Abelard
Reading Between Friends: The Correspondence of Hannah Arendt and Mary McCarthy at Arendt’s grave at Bard College in New York

Reading Tomas Halik’s Night of the Confessor: Christian Faith in and Age of Uncertainty outside of the Academic Parish of Prague where, since 1990, Tomas Halik has served as a spiritual leader.

Reading The Little Prince in Quebec City at the house Antoine de Saint-Exupery visitedReading “Ode to a Nightingale” by John Keats in the room in which he died in Rome
Reading Jean Vanier’s Becoming Human at La Ferme à Trosly-Breuil, France Reading Summer Meditations by Václav Havel along the Charles Bridge
in Prague, Czech RepublicReading Edmund Husserl at his desk at the Catholic University of Leuven in BelgiumReading George Weigel’s Letters to a Young Catholic at the Cathedral in ChartresChartres
Reading Dante’s Inferno in Florence

Reading Shirley du Boulay’s biography of Cecily Saunders at St. Christopher’s Hospice in Sydenham, England  Reading the Addresses of Pope John Paul II and Pope Francis given at Yad Vashem in 2000 and 2014 respectively at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem  Reading GeorgeWeigel’s Letters to a Young Catholic in KrakowReading Joseph Howe’s 1851 “Letter to the Electors”

outside of the Nova Scotia Legislature

Reading Henri Nouwen’s journals, draft manuscripts, and correspondence at the
Henri Nouwen Archives at the University of Toronto

Reading Cicero at the Roman Forum

Reading poetry by Jan Kochanowski at the train station in Krakow
Reading A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali at the pool in Kigali
at Hôtel des Milles Collines in Rwanda
Pool in Kigali
Listening to my friend Esther who is from the Netherlands to read Etty Hillesum’s diaries to me in the original Dutch

Reading Majdanek: The Concentration Camp in Lublin at the Majdanek Museum 

Reading Hannah Senesh’s poem “Blessed is the Match” at her grave in Mount Herzl Cemetery, Jerusalem