How to cheat at Christmas

Opinion

    This isn’t some Delia-style preach to use ready-made mashed potato. There are only one and a half shopping days left, but it is still not too late to get a good deal on gifts – they key is to be cheeky. At this late stage you’ve got no chance of getting online orders […]

Stick to the rules or just don’t bother

Evergreen, Opinion

    This is a post that I meant to write just after I last flew with Ryanair from Nantes to East Midlands. It is, perhaps surprisingly, not a rant about Ryanair. It is instead a rant about the inconsistency of airport security checks, and in particular their approach to liquids and gels (or LAGs, […]

Spot the difference – what a hotel says and what it means

Khon Kaen, Opinion, Thailand

    Compare these two pictures. One is from the D’Ma Hotel’s web site, showing a plush, pleasantly decorated room. The other is the reality, the hotel in the flesh; nowhere near the most grotesque I’ve had the misfortune of staying in, but really nothing special either – just your slightly below average budget Thai […]

Are the French stupid?

Evergreen, France, Opinion

    From time to time I come to think that the French aren’t a very intelligent people. I am not one to stereotype, but here it is just too easy. Take today – after spending the afternoon battling for my sanity with vacant-headed pupils who don’t (or refuse to) understand the simplest of instructions, […]

The language of Eurostar

Evergreen, France, Opinion

    I am beginning to feel like St Pancras is my second home, such is the frequency with which I am seem to be travelling by train from Nantes to London of late. But there is one part of a Eurostar journey that is still very bizarre – the not knowing whether the woman […]

Absence makes the heart grow fonder

England, Evergreen, Opinion

    ‘Absence makes the heart grow fonder.’ So I was reminded by a friend last night as we caught up on six and a half months of gossip, not having seen each other since June last year, over a couple of glasses of wine too many. Never has this saying meant more to me […]

The terrorists have won

England, Evergreen, France, Opinion

    Dear oh interested one, I write from the battlefield of several personal and professional crises. Hapless ex-employees, broken cash cards, impossible-to-access bank accounts; I have been afflicted by all of these and more over the past few weeks. But it isn’t these problems themselves which bother me – it’s the fact that, everywhere […]

The Girl Outdoors

Opinion

    Another quick plug for someone else’s blog – I’ve just discovered The Girl Outdoors, run by the lovely Sian, who I worked with on the Student Impact newspaper at Bath University. Now I’m neither a girl (well not completely) nor outdoors much at the minute, but it’s a lovely little blog all about […]

Public urination and handshakes

Evergreen, France, Opinion

    About time for some more thoughts on the French, now I’ve been here five weeks. First up, pee. Yes, pee. What is it about the French that makes them think it is okay to pee up walls, into shrubs and so on? I can forgive the occasional widdle at the side of the […]

My son is gay

Opinion

    I’ve just come across this heartening blog post and wanted to share it with you. And doesn’t the kid look awesome in his costume?! http://nerdyapplebottom.com/2010/11/02/my-son-is-gay/

Culture rage

Evergreen, France, Opinion

    The French must have some of the silliest opening hours in the world. I’ve just got back from an attempted trip to do some washing, having watched the clothes pile up for weeks – I must have more clothes than I think, because it’s the first load I’ve done in my three and […]

Kanchanaburi – a town with many faces

Evergreen, Kanchanaburi, Opinion, Thailand

    I am finding Kanchanaburi difficult. I have been here before, but only for a few hours at most – a quick glimpse of the Death Railway, en route to Erawan waterfalls or transiting to Sangkhlaburi, further west. In fact, it was only yesterday as I wandered aimlessly around the Bridge over the Kwai […]

Catching Up

Opinion

    My summer of updates on this blog didn’t go quite as planned; in fact, it didn’t get further than Bangkok’s Lumpini Park at the start of July. I did write a collection of posts while on the road during my fantastic three-month trip around Thailand, but somehow they never made it online. But, […]

World wide wonders

Opinion, Thailand

    A bit of a techie post from me for a change. You see, I’ve got a bit of a split personality. I am not only a person with a love of travel but also a languages student back home in the UK – and, more crucially for this post, I run my own […]

How cameras have changed travel

Evergreen, Opinion

    As I walked home on Friday evening, a strange thing happened. I stopped, as I often do, to take a photo or two as I walked down the steep hill from the University’s campus – struck by an especially pretty skyline over Bath’s city centre, the Abbey’s side gently illuminated and a million […]

Shock Revelations

Evergreen, Germany, Opinion

Two things strike me as I begin to get more and more excited about heading off to Berlin next week. I’ve not been to Europe since 2002 and, more shockingly, I’ve never been to another European capital city.