Suddenly the days have become sunnier and the trees more glossy. The food has become more addictive and the cheap massages and pedicures more tempting. I’m sure you can guess why… it’s because we know we are leaving. Partir c’est mourir un peu say the French. We Brits say, parting is such sweet sorrow. I’d … More Loving and leaving
It was ‘one of those weeks’. The kind that would have driven me to distraction had it not taken place in a laid back country where things go wrong, people break rules and old hands simply shrug and smile, saying, ‘that’s Malaysia!’ And though our problems were all car-related, instead of driving me mad, after three … More That’s Malaysia!
“Some places make you feel more full than others,” said Palestinian author, Nathalie Handal at last weekend’s third Georgetown Literary Festival in Penang. The theme of the weekend was irresistible to me – Hiraeth – a Welsh word that means longing for a homeland that is no longer there. Undoubtedly, this island is a place … More Finding my homeland
Konichiwa! In the Netherlands they give you a biscuit with your coffee. In Japan they give you a wet wipe. You don’t really need that biscuit, do you? You do, however, if you are anywhere near as messy as me, need a wet wipe. That’s what it is like in Japan – you get what … More Japan has everything you need
It never crossed our minds a week earlier, when we spontaneously decided to take advantage of yet another Malaysian bank holiday, that we’d land in Cambodia at the start of its biggest bank holiday. Malaysia gets so many bank holidays that we are always going away during religious festivals and it has never seemed to … More Enforced Spontaneity in Cambodia
We love travel and whenever we visit a new place eating is high on our agenda. As you know, I love everything about food – planning it, shopping for it, cooking it, sharing it and writing about it. Like most people I have more cookbooks and travel guides than any other kinds of books. We … More Eating Vietnam
It’s many moons since I owned a full set of motorcycle leathers and my own crash helmet. It’s several decades since I rode pillion through north Norfolk lanes thick with the smell of strawberries. I was more than a little apprehensive when Ian booked a full day trip on motorbikes on the Hai Van (aka … More Zen and the art of touring Vietnam
One of the disadvantages of choosing a lifestyle that forces your children to ‘grow up global’ is that there is every chance they will end up living in a different country from you. One of the advantages of choosing a lifestyle that forces your children to ‘grow up global’ is that there is every chance … More Who’s ein Berliner?
I’ve never been much good at doing nothing but I know it’s good for me. Nevertheless, the older I’ve got, and the wiser (!), the more I recognise the value of mindfulness. But it’s harder than ever these days since the SmartPhone. Whereas I once would have sat in a waiting room in contemplation, it … More The art of sitting
It’s taken me almost five years to write about my empty nest. It’s a surprise, particularly to me, someone who has no compunction about revealing my vulnerability. It is five years now since Josh left home for university and seven since Sam left before him. Living in the Netherlands at the time, both our boys … More The shifting sands of the expat empty nest