There are two ways to read Dust Tea, Dingoes, & Dragons: sit down with the book when you have plenty of time. Once you start, it’s difficult to stop. Or, you can take 22 separate sessions, a chapter at a time, to prolong the reading pleasure. R.F. Hemphill has written a wonderful non-fiction book that reads like a good fiction, filled with stories after stories set around the globe. As a company executive for an energy company, he traveled in business extensively and recorded his copious experiences in business, culture, cuisines and personal contacts. He sent 22 letters to his father during this time, each now presented as chapters. His writing is excellent and his humor outstanding. Here is an example: executives in his company were obliged to spend a week every year doing labor at one of the company’s power plants.
“This book is about business done in the international arena, frequently in places where I would not recommend you take a vacation.”
The description of one of his weeks is great—cleaning out boilers, unplugging coal feeders and shooting 3500 condenser water box tubes. But these visits include plenty of pleasure, such as the asado (barbecue) at the company’s Argentine plant. We also learn much about business and the fascinating ways of conducting it in the international arena. This is a great book!
George Erdosh is a culinary scientist, food writer, and certified cooking teacher with a strong science and research background (Ph.D., McGill University, Montreal). He is the author of 10 published food-related books: a six-book series for young readers Cooking Throughout American History and The African-American Kitchen; Start and Run a Catering Business (in its 4th edition, translated into five languages), Tried and True Recipes from a Caterer’s Kitchen and What Recipes Don’t Tell You, as well as numerous articles and magazines and newspapers. Originally an exploration geologist, he switched career to be a high-end caterer, a business he ran for more than 10 years, before switching to food writing and running cooking classes.
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