Welcome

Me, on the rooftop of a temple in Penang, Malaysia.

I'm glad you dropped by. Pull up a chair; fetch a cup of tea or a beer; make yourself at home. You'll find pages about my travelling, with photos of course; some of my writing and my thoughts about it; a bit about me; and links to my blog and email. That should be enough to fill your time while your tea gets cold.

Of course, there are links to my first travel book, OVER THE HILL AND FAR AWAY. You mean there's more than one? ... Scroll down, you'll find where one book lurks, more are sure to follow. Though just ebooks this time - they are short accounts of more recent trips. And you never know, I might put them together in a print book if enough people ask me nicely.

Yes, I'd love you to buy it - if you are in a hurry you can click here for a print book in the UK and here for a UK ebook. You're in the US? Click here. You'd rather use Smashwords? You'll find it hereYou're a Kobo user: click here

But please, hang around and say hello first. You might find treasure here.

Here is my great book cover

I've been asked about the elephant - ah, the elephant. I rode her through a grove in Kerala, in Southern India, with my guide crushing coffee beans and cardomon seeds into the palms of my hands for me to smell them - when he wasn't taking pictures!

I only spent about an hour with her. It was, of course, a venture set up for tourists, but I did get the chance to peer into the elephant shelters. In some ways they were better off than the mahouts. They were hosed regularly (essential for elephants), and able to roam freely. I even watched as a mother elephant allowed a mahout to wash her baby - the trust between man and elephant was touching. So, as elephants go, mine has a reasonable life!

And she's become associated with me on a forum or few in recent years, and so it seemed fitting that she found her way onto the cover of my book.

You didn't really think I'd stop there, did you?

Cover, Bombs and Butterflies.

In January 2014 I'm off to Cuba - as I write this I know only that I have a hotel for five days in Havana, and then anything could happen. I've rarely travelled anywhere with so much advice ringing in my ears from others who have been there. But the island is changing. I'll let you know how I get on - I'll be updating the blog while I'm away, so do click on the link on the sidebar to find out what I've been up to. (Well, some of it!)

Last winter I went to Laos. My physiotherapist had made sure my creaking knees could cope with the squat toilets, but no one had said anything about the bombs that still litter the jungles, the rice paddies, the playgrounds. It was a chastening trip.

I wrote about all it, of course, in BOMBS AND BUTTERFLIES: OVER THE HILL IN LAOS and if you want to read a snippet, the drop into the travel writing page (in the writing section) and you'll find a clue or two.

You can find it on Amazon here if you are in the UK and here from America. If you prefer Smashwords, click here, and Kobo: here.

Cover, Hidden Tiger Raging Mountain.

And yes - there is another ebook! HIDDEN TIGER RAGING MOUNTAIN: OVER THE HILL IN NEPAL.

Over the Hill and Far Away

I left home believing I knew all about travelling now - I understood transport to unlikely places. I could forgive the passing insects, didn't cringe at occasional pongs. But nothing prepared me for the cyclone. Nor a closer encounter with a tiger than was strictly necessary.

And by the time I came home, I realised just how little I really knew - you'll have to read the book to find out just how challenging the lessons I learned.

There are no extracts on this site now, but you can find it here if you are in the US, and here from the UK. Or on Smashwords here. You use Kobo? Click here

I try to update the blog a couple of times a week (there's a link on the sidebar), if you want my recent ramblings. And do drop by and 'like' me on Facebook, maybe join in a chat or two. Or occasionally you can find me twittering.

Please - if you have thoughts about the site, ideas for other things you'd like me to include, do let me know. You can send me a message via the 'contact me' page.