How Much Luggage Should I Take?

If you’re wondering how much luggage to take on your journey you’re asking the wrong question. The fact is you will fill up whatever bag you use for the journey, so the correct question is “What bag should I use?” Continue reading

Two War Books for Travellers

I’ve only just worked out something that everyone else knew ages ago – this year is the 100th anniversary of the start of World War One. Continue reading

10 Reasons Why Hitchhiking is Great

Hitching is apparently out of date, out of style and dangerous. I used to hitchhike a lot and recently I have been doing it again, and it’s liberating. Here are 10 reasons why I recommend it: Continue reading

Traveller’s Guide to Scottish Independence

What’s the best approach to take when visiting a country like Scotland which is in the grip of a huge debate about independence? I’ve asked a few non-Scottish people what they think about the upcoming independence referendum and their replies were non-committal; saying “it’s up to you”. Continue reading

Goodbye Family Blog – Hello Travel Blog

Some years ago I set up a blog for my extended family:  I thought it was a really good idea as my family is full of people who can write really well. Continue reading

My New Travel Blog

The problem with blogs is they often lack a purpose. Setting up a blog is easy and doesn’t cost a penny if you use the excellent Tumblr or WordPress platforms (this blog runs on a WordPress engine and you can see my photo blog here, which is hosted by Tumblr). Continue reading

New Book on Child Witches in Congo by Romanian-Based Author

I groaned when Mike Ormsby sent me a copy of his first novel — Child Witch Kinshasa — as I felt obliged to read it and do a review. What a chore. I’m not a reviewer, I know nothing about Congo and I’ve got piles of other books to read.

I opened Mike’s book with the intention of reading a few pages, getting bored, and then giving it up with a clean conscience. Problem was I couldn’t put the damn thing down and, with a growing sense of wonder, I realised I had stumbled across a gem. Continue reading

My Pulitzer Prize

I published an article on Huffington Post on January 1st 2014 called Thank You Romania and it went viral. Over 11,000 people liked it on Facebook and everyone I met in Romania seemed to have seen it. Apparently it was just what was needed in Romania – a positive article to balance all the scaremongering by the British tabloids about the „Romanian immigrant invasion’. By now, almost two months later, everyone knows that story is a joke but for Romanians a bitter taste remains; it’s hard for them to accept that they’re disliked – even hated – in the UK.

When Formula AS, a leading Romanian weekly newspaper, asked me to do an interview based on my brief analysis of the British tabloids in my Thank You Romania, I jumped at the chance. Continue reading

Happy New 2014

It’s New Year’s Day in Scotland and, of course, it’s raining. I am waiting for my brother and his friends to turn up and then we’ll eat a lunch of grouse, bread sauce and roast potatoes and then – hopefully – see the old French comedy Les Visiteurs.

I’m rather ashamed of myself for not writing for this blog for so long. I have lots of excuses but I’m not going to bore you with them , instead I will add to my list of New Year’s Resolutions with this one: in 2014 I will write for my blog more. Continue reading

Very Simple & Incredibly Complicated

We recently celebrated the launch of Castle Craig’s new Romanian website by having dinner at a fish restaurant in Bucharest called Happy Fish. I had the dorada. Continue reading