• "I have not been everywhere, but it is on the list"

    Susan Sontag

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An Indian Summer

“The whole secret of existence is to have no fear; never fear what will become of you, depend on no one. Only the moment you reject all help are you freed. No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path. The secret of health for … Continue reading

An Ethiopian Christmas…(yes Geldof, they know…)

2 Irishmen, a Scot, a Brit and an Aussie went hiking in Ethiopia…you would be forgiven for thinking it was the opening line of a terrible joke. I have often said that travelling is the closest you can come to time travel. Living in Vietnam for two years, felt like I had front row seats … Continue reading

Brunei! Is that a country in the Middle East? (A nostalgic look back to where it all began)

  Brunei? Is that a country in the Middle East? I wondered when the man from the recruitment agency in London told me about the job. A 3-month position, with all expenses paid and a competitive salary, it didn’t really matter to me where it was, it seemed a better alternative than looking for accommodation … Continue reading

Life in Lausanne: First Impressions

  The Place: Lausanne is a small, quaint and picturesque city of 130,000 people. I read an article about Lausanne before I moved here, in which the author noted how the town sits amid one of the most idyllic settings in Europe. Nestled on Lake Geneva or Lac Leman to the locals. A lake so … Continue reading

Reality Check: Back to the “Real World” Lessons in Real Life 101

It was always bound to be a transition, moving out of Africa. Really though, Tanzania to Switzerland! Could I have found two more disparate locations? For me Tanzania, Vietnam and to a lesser extent Borneo had been refreshingly real places to live. First world problems were put into perspective rather quickly, especially in Africa. There … Continue reading

Postscript- On a serious note: What Empathy Has Taught Me…About Poverty

“There is little to be said in favour of poverty, but it is often an incubator of true friendship. Many people will appear to befriend you when you are wealthy, but precious few will do the same when you are poor. If wealth is a magnet, poverty is a kind of repellent. Yet poverty often … Continue reading

Africa In Review: Part 3 ….and the Ugly!

THE UGLY: The compromises Namely……. A SOCIAL LIFE It is truth universally acknowledged (in Africa at least) that a single white women whether in possession of fortune or not, must be in want of a husband, fair game? Oh how Jane Austen would disagree. Forgive me for being cynical but if a man asks me on … Continue reading

Africa In Review: Part 2 The Good, the Bad….

THE GOOD: What I will miss: 1. THE TANZANIAN PEOPLE: In particular, their insatiable sense of humour. And how they can be so jovial at any hour, despite the circumstances. Whether it be at 7am in the morning catching the bus to work or while sucking fuel out of a gas tank of a vehicle … Continue reading

Africa in Review: Part 1: The Good the Bad and the Ugly

There is nothing quite like dropping the statement “I am moving to Africa” into a conversation to bring complete speechlessness to others. I remember telling people when the topic came up, and their reaction was universally the same. Complete silence. Followed by an open mouth with no words coming out, inevitably followed by an attempt … Continue reading

The Mango Rains: Conversations and Cultural Exchanges in the Tropics

There is nothing like rain in the tropics. It is one of my favourite things. Here in Dar we have two wet seasons. The delightfully named Mango Rains, which occur November to late December and the main wet season March to May. Don’t ask me the meteorological explanation behind it, but the response my colleague … Continue reading

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