Traditional Greek Komboloi made of Samos Olive and thousand-year Danish Bog Oak

Four thousand years ago, an ancient oak sank into a Danish peat bog where it lay, dark and hidden through the Stone, Iron and Bronze ages, the Viking period and Middle Ages until – shortly after WWII – it was dug up, black as pitch and almost as hard as coal, and laid to dry for a further seventy years.

Ten years ago I found some olive wood branches in Samos, Greece – packed them in my luggage and figured I would find use for them some day.

Today, Niels Ole Rønberg performed his magic on the lathe – and the result is a traditional Greek Komboloi made of Samos Olive and thousand-year Danish Bog Oak. In the lower picture, the Komboloi is joined by 45-million-year old Danish Amber and 300-million-year old North Sea coal in a bowl of 100-year old Danish Elm, also worked by Niels Ole Rønberg.



Excerpt from “For All It Was Worth”… and the discovery of a long-lost painting!!

“My grandfather, vintage of 1871, was a Dekorations-Malermeister, a master house painter, and with this in Germany important qualification, and as he had his own business, he belonged to the established middle classes. He was spared the losses associated with the 1923 hyperinflation because he had no bank or savings accounts to speak of. At this stage my own family was in the lucky position to own also practically nothing, so they had nothing to lose.

He was, however, not only a house painter, but he also had studied painting at the famous Dresden Art Academy and painted some beautiful oil paintings. A few I have salvaged over all these years. Often I looked at them, reminiscing about the times with my grandparents, and the memories of Dresden as it was then, before the 1945 fire storm and virtually total destruction of the city.”

In 2016, an oil painting my grandfather had painted of the ‘Frauenkirche in Dresden’ and which was the pride and joy of our sitting room – and for which he became quite famous in Dresden – was discovered by my son for sale at a Dresden Art and Antiques dealer.


“As a youngster he was apprenticed to Walter Kolbe – later to become a famous sculptor – before he studied Painting in Dresden. This, apparently, did not work out and eventually he became a house painter by profession, and a very successful one.”

Update: we contacted Joachim Noack and – fortunately – the painting had not been sold! Another example of the power of the internet!

Excerpt from “For All It Was Worth”



Cover Image: The author listening to Radio Dresden on a Crystal Detector Radio



Excerpt from “For All It Was Worth”:

“In about 1927 my grandfather acquired a detector radio. This was a contraption the size of a large cigar box, with what looked like a silver wire on an arm touching a crystal of some sort, and a dial to select the desired radio station. In his case this was a bit theoretical because the only station he could receive was Radio Dresden, and this only very scratchily. But a lot of fun was had by all, I remember. After all, this was for this generation the first new technological adventure, after electric light, cars, Zeppelins and Flying Machines.”


I am getting to the end of the Content editing of “FOR ALL IT WAS WORTH” and will move on to Copy editing (commas, spelling etc.) and e-book and paperback formatting. In the meantime I have been thinking strategy, marketing and publicity:

E-BOOK: three parts of ca. 35000 words as three e-books. The first book to be free to attract initial readers, the second and third to be published at 2.99USD:


PAPERBACK: The combined book will be available as an “omnibus” paperback (12.99USD) and ebook version (4.99USD). Blank bookcover with clipping path

A website will be set up with excerpts from the books, photographs, banners etc. and links to Amazon. This will be the “catch page” for an advertising campaign which I will initiate when all the books are uploaded.


BIOCOMM PRESS news: PARALLEL DEVELOPMENTS is now available on AMAZON and selected outlets in a Paperback version!

Following the publication of the KINDLE version of PARALLEL DEVELOPMENTS on AMAZON, formatting and cover design of the paperback version is now completed:

Aimed at scientists, journalists and writers, PARALLEL DEVELOPMENTS is a unique reference of Earth’s history covering the period from the Big Bang to 3000BC.

After the final review, both versions are now published and available on AMAZON and selected outlets, and BIOCOMM PRESS is officially a Publisher!