Through his long, productive career, Paul Theroux has mixed nonfiction books about exotic travel with novels set in exotic places. Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong, Honduras – he lives in and writes about places most of us never see.
In time, we shall be in a position to bestow on South Africa the greatest possible gift – a more human face.
You have to remember that although Gandhi and Churchill only met physically once, their paths crossed again and crossed again all over the globe, from London and South Africa and India and back to London. In fact, I discovered that during the Boer War in 1899 they literally passed yards from each other on the battlefield.
Some countries that are close to Europe that already hold Deutschemarks, clearly would automatically hold euros, those are countries in Eastern Europe mainly, a few countries in Africa.
I was there during the first elections in South Africa. I watched them take down the apartheid flag and raise the new flag.
Whether I’m trying to figure out what the U.S. military is doing in Latin America or Africa, Afghanistan or Qatar, the response is remarkably uniform – obstruction and obfuscation, hurdles and hindrances. In short, the good old-fashioned military runaround.
Well, surely, I am not in charge of South Africa.
It turns out that, if you want to know what the U.S. military is doing in Africa, it’s advantageous to be connected to a large engineering or construction firm looking for business.
For Africa to me… is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth. No man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been and exactly how he arrived at his present place.
I’ve still not written as well as I want to. I want to write so that the reader in Des Moines, Iowa, in Kowloon, China, in Cape Town, South Africa, can say, ‘You know, that’s the truth. I wasn’t there, and I wasn’t a six-foot black girl, but that’s the truth.’