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“All poets must eventually bow before the haiku. Bow before the haiku! Can you imagine?”
“For my part,” contributed the Count, “I am glad that Homer wasn’t born in Japan.”
– From A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles
There’s something beautiful about quiet. About silence. In a world of so much noise, so much inane immediacy, it’s nice to detach once in a while. Welcome to The Moodie Davitt Report Interim Tung Chung Bureau, set up in the library at the Coastal Skyline Clubhouse near my Hong Kong apartment.
A library. How long since you last visited a library? I recommend it wholeheartedly. It’s as restorative as a 90-minute spa, a walk in the forest, a plunge into cool alpine lake waters.
The only sounds I can hear are the gentle whirr of the air conditioning system and the occasional turn of a page in a book or a newspaper. I have my South China Morning Post, my laptop (and therefore my company, some would say my life) and a wonderful book – A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles, a sublime testament to the power of good writing. All, for once, is at peace in the, and my, world.
I’ve been on the road for three weeks and the journey continues tomorrow as I head to Singapore on an important assignment, before a late night flight back to London via Hong Kong on Thursday.
I won’t be staying there for long. Through the balance of August and September I am away for all but one week, due to commitments in Germany, the Netherlands, China (both Hong Kong and the Mainland), Tokyo, Singapore and Paris. Plenty more Interim Bureaux, lots of noise, alas no more libraries.