Travels

A tour of Sri Lanka – part I

As with most of my travels, I arrived in Sri Lanka with a cloud of interesting ideas but no real itinerary. This time, a combination of train strikes and weather helped make the initial decision easy. Beach bad, hills good. However, the first part of the journey was going to be the most challenging, and the easiest option seemed to…

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Hiking, Travels

Soloing the Sawtooths

After my friends had departed back to Portland, I set out back into the Wilderness alone. Hiking alone sounds antisocial, but for me it’s an opportunity for introspection and examination of my connections with others at a distance. As they say, ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’. I’m not sure that’s necessarily the case, but it’s certainly possible to realise…

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Travels

Starting a Journey from Portland

Portland, Oregon is one of my very favourite cities. It suits me perfectly. It has a wonderful vibe, it’s easy to walk around, it’s got mountains nearby, excellent coffee, places it’s actually easy to find vegetarian and vegan food. Showing someone else around a place I love is always slightly awkward though. What if they don’t love it as much…

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Travels

Sensations and Suggestions of Guatemala

As a contrast to the otherworldly landscapes of my first day in Guatemala, today I take a trip to Antigua. The old capital of Guatemala has many reminders of the Spanish invasion from the Baroque churches to the Moorish arcades. The colours are incredible and though the centre of town is very clearly changing to accommodate the increasing tourist population…

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Hiking, Travels

Volcanoes in Guatemala

Being in a new place can be an intense experience. This is more likely when it represents a marked departure from the things and people I’m accustomed to encountering day to day. Guatemala has provided plenty of opportunities for new sensations. The place that I’m staying is palatial, with a balcony on each floor looking out towards the volcanoes that…

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Travels

Reflections on a Journey

It’s funny how my experience of airports and stations is so different from the experience of journeys and the destinations themselves. An airport visit is often an integral part of the journey and yet it is entirely separate and unique. I often pass the time writing in the notebook that I carry everywhere, reading a book, listening to music, but…

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Travels

Cycling in Memorial Park

I wasn’t all that excited about Houston. My office is here, and there’s a pretty awesome Space Centre, but it’s kind of sprawling, it’s really hot and it’s terribly humid. Arriving into the face of thunderstorms and floods hadn’t done a lot to change my opinion. But then the rain stopped, the flood waters receded and the sun came out.…

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Hiking

Paying a visit to the gods of old

Don’t you love friends who greet you not with “Hello” but with “Let’s go on an adventure!” whilst unconcealed excitement sparkles in their eyes? I do. So when my friend Alkis suggested flying to Greece for the weekend to climb Mount Olympus, I didn’t have to think long – I’d booked flights before I’d asked for the time off work.…

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Travels

Burning Man 2016

Burning Man made me remember. So many people say that Burning Man changed their life. But for me, it made me remember that my life had changed already. After almost a year back in civilisation, I’d begun to grow back into London life. Working, commuting, buying, rushing, worrying. I hadn’t forgotten, but I had noticed that certain thoughts were becoming…

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