Thanks for reading. This blog is an opportunity for me to capture some of the diversity of my writing interests. My muse tend to appear on my shoulder as I board an international flight although not all of my writing is inspired by travel and foreign places. These blogs have been the basis of a novel (Flowers of Baghdad) but there are a few other writing projects in progress besides. Please feel free to leave a comment. Or two.

The Workshed

The breeze I was looking for last night is here this morning, cool and steady, stirring up the reeds along the riverbank and creating a noisy chop on the river. There is nothing to hint at the 40 degrees to come. There is no one about as I park on the bank and watch the…

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My Name is Wal

Our resort on the banks of the Nile is a small compound about 25 by 25 metres. It is hedged by a stick fence, mostly falling down though on the outside there is a jumble of thorn bushes as an extra layer of deterrence.  Integrated defence some might call it. Peter, already introduced, keeps the…

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Thiangrial

(As I tap this out in the back blocks of Sudan from my hand written notes I see it is 4.45pm on Sunday and the Writers Group will be wrapping up their monthly session – writing, worlds apart in so many different ways). Ribbons of black streaks stain the grasslands below, the result of burning…

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206 to Thiangrial

If pilots pray before they take off with passengers then I guess they usually keep it to themselves. Not this guy. He gives a safety briefing which is thorough and practical and before he climbs in prays. What does that mean about the prospects of the flight? Well, given it is AIMAIR it means we…

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Awake at Sparrows

I woke to the sound of roosters and flew in an instant to villages along the Kokoda Track. And then laughed to myself as I recalled trying to explain to a Japanese friend what the phrase “to wake at sparrows” meant. Some things just do not translate. All the Australians in the group were rolling…

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Dead set, this is Nairobi

Welllllcohm, wellllllcohm. Hospitality is a hallmark here. They shake hands over and over and seem glad to see you, a long lost friend even though just met, rolling their tongues over the “l” as if tasting it. They are interested in knowing who you are, smiling and nodding and committing to a long drawn out…

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Taxi Story – the Kenyan

Waiting outside Nairobi airport. An earlier made friend called Peter walks up in the company of another chap I have never seen., who holds out his cell phone and says by way of introduction: Here you go, talk to this man. Who? (And who are you?) The person on the end of the phone knows…

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Welcome to Kenya

The first hint at what sort of airport you are going to find comes as the undercarriage touches the tarmac and the nose wheel anticipates doing something similar in a few seconds time. We rush past a couple of dumped Soviet cargo aircraft (An-24s, or were they 26s? I blinked.), a Lockheed L110 and three…

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Dubai Airport

I have seen some in my time but I think this one is a favourite. Airports that is. Not because it glitters (Changi does a better job of that) but because it is such a melting pot.  It gives true meaning to the word “exotic”. Two lads are trilling with excitement in the coffee shop…

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