In a piece here Amina Talhimet observes that in order to make it in southern Europe, it is no longer enough for African emigrants to be odd-job men. That’s true to a certain extent, but sometimes the skills that enable the boat people to earn a living here are obtained on the road.
There’s a young lad working round the corner who left his family in Muslim Anglophone West Africa and walked most of the way to Algeria. There he worked for two years in a smithy, saving all the while for the next stage. When he had saved enough, he was bundled into one of two boats by smugglers. His boat made it.
His next stroke of phenomenal good fortune came here, when he was taken off the street and given a home by a family. They had a chat with the neighbours, who employed him as an apprentice in their workshop. He’s now attending school and has just rented his first flat. He blushes when he sees women topless on the beach, but he’s still only 17.
- Learn your languages or end up a beggar
A 76-year-old Malay Muslim woman from southern Thailand who got on the wrong bus 25 years ago and ended up living
- Sock it to them, saviour
African guru sells excellent footwear
- Squeezing it for all it’s worth
Idi Amin and other celebrity accordionists
Check this fine interview with Violeta la Burra, courtesy of la Gazza Lazza. To demonstrate to you how much standards have
- Transvestite barrel organ dancers in 1930s Whitechapel and the 1860s London West End
With acrobats, clowns, and Doris and Thisbe, goddesses of wind.