Welcome to the second episode of Pritam’s Longform Wednesdays, where I share approximately five longform articles chosen from my reading on the internet through the week.

Reading longer articles is quite challenging me for these days; just the act of staying with the article for longer than a few minutes, while the rest of the internet is waiting, just a tab or a click away. However, it is more than worth the effort, especially if I manage to get immersed in the narrative. It’s part of an effort on my part to be slow and deliberate about the things I do. After all, the motto on the front page of this website is “Do not hurry. Do not rest.”, a quote by Goethe.

This week, we have: nature, heroin, Anthony Bourdain, an fantasy short story, and a diamond heist, so let’s get started!

Click on the headers to go to the articles.

Call to the wild – National Geographic

“People underestimate the happiness effect” of being outdoors, Nisbet says. “We don’t think of it as a way to increase happiness. We think other things will, like shopping or TV. We evolved in nature. It’s strange we’d be so disconnected.”

Just an article outlining the science that shows that being outside, in the mountains (maybe a beach too, I guess, if you’re into that) has a measurably positive effect on your happiness. Nature makes us nicer, happier, more creative, and more peaceful.

The science bears out what you will most certainly feel if you just get out of the concrete and into the green.

Why I bought my daughter heroin – BBC

This is a sad narrative of what a family goes through when one of them gets addicted. The writing is pretty raw and brutally honest about the daughter (the addict) and the mother (the writer of the article), and what both think of each other.

Anthony Bourdain’s Moveable Feast – New Yorker

A profile of Anthony Bourdain, how he travels, works, eats and lives. It’s a great, and inspiring look into the days of a great personality. Just watching his shows (No ReservationsLayover) or reading his books makes you trust the man immediately.

A fist of permutations in Lightning And Wildflowers – Tor

When I was a kid, I would always pick up Science Fiction novels that advertised themselves as Hugo and Nebula award winners, and it was a Nebula nomination that led me to read this short story.

It is as much about fantasy and alternate timelines as it is about trying to understand, and get through the pain of someone close to you dying.

The world’s biggest Diamond Heist – Wired

An old article (from 2009) that outlines the planning and execution of an improbably diamond heist. It reads like the plot of a movie, including awesomely creative solutions to security measures, characters with specialisations, twists, and even betrayals!

The “thief” and the “mastermind” have been arrested, but the diamonds still remain unrecovered. It’s a great story!