Schwarzer Tee und Blaue Augen

Black Tea and Black Eyes – my journey across Anatolia. From Istanbul to Mount Ararat.
  • October 2014
  • Publisher: Dumont-Reiseverlag
  • 330 pages
  • Price: € 14,99 * € 12,99 (E-Book)
  • ISBN-13: 978-3770182633
  • Click here to see the video about the book
  • The book is available on amazon
Schwarzer Tee und Blaue Augen


The country where people eat sesame rings (simit) for breakfast and buy yogurt in tubs is both familiar and alien to us. If you threw Germany, Russia, Greece, Egypt and Iran into a blender, Turkey would probably come out. Gerald Drißner travels through Anatolia – from Istanbul to the Mediterranean, through desert-like landscapes, to the green coast of the Black Sea, to Kurdistan and to the cold mountain regions of the East.

He visits a remote valley where the best chess players are said to live and meets the man who wants to build Turkey’s largest ski resort. He travels to where the apostle Paul began his Christian mission and to a village that is struggling to survive.

While drinking tea he learns what the Deep State is, why the head of government hates cigarettes, what mustaches have to do with politics and how blue glass eyes protect against misfortune. The journey ends where Turkey borders on Iran and where once Noah’s Ark is said to have stranded.


On the cover of the book, a small text is added to the title: "Encounters in Turkey". And this is exactly what makes the (typically Austrian?) charm of the book. Drißner does not lecture, he does not show the reader what he knows about this country on the Bosporus - he meets the intellectuals with the same curiosity as the people from villages far away from the modern big cities.

Seume Literature Award

Gerald Drißner is a travel journalist of the new generation. He is the counter-draft to today's unfortunately usual rapid research. Gerald Drißner moves to the country he wants to write about. Learns the language, lets himself be driven. The results are travel books like the one from Egypt or now the latest from Turkey. This book isn't a travel guide, but a source of inspiration to understand a country.

Jürgen Drensek, das Reiseradio


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