Category Archives: Asia

The “Frontier School of Character”: Travels along the Pamir Highway Part II

To Karakul.  “I shall wander the wilds of Central Asia possessed of an insane desire to try the effects of cold steel across my throat” George Hayward 1839 – 1870 After two weeks of relentless sunshine, departure day opened with … Continue reading

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A samosa wrapper.

There are street food sellers on Nuwara Eliya’s main street. If one is to walk outside the market, where the porticoed sidewalk shrinks to the width of a catflap, he’d see how a food cart has been parked in the … Continue reading

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Rummaging through Sir David’s bin: Outtakes from “Planet Earth II”.

In the year of our Lord 2016, BBC’s Natural History Unit decided to embark on a mammoth project, filming what would’ve become the four, splendid episodes of “Planet Earth II”. Under the watchful eye of Sir David Attenborough crews were dispatched to … Continue reading

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After the daytrippers have gone.

It never ceases to amaze me how much a place can change depending on the weather. Take, for instance, Nuwara Eliya: I arrive under a glorious sunshine and an air so gleaming with light that you’d be excused for trying … Continue reading

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Going into the country.

One Greg Anderson, whose biographical info I could find identified him as being “American” and an “author”, apparently is the father of the quote, dear to all those who use and abuse of the word “wanderlust”, “Concentrate on the journey, not … Continue reading

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Where kites fly above the fort.

I often think that I’d have been a Portuguese explorer. This isn’t because of an unquenchable thirst for boot, a penchant for ending up chewed by unfriendly natives, or an interest in being consumed by hideous tropical diseases; rather, it’s … Continue reading

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Sri Lankan trains.

To travel by train is to see nature and human beings, towns and churches and rivers – In fact, to see life  Agatha Christie There’s something special about the very act of boarding a train. For starters, it’s a lot … Continue reading

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The world from above. Steppe, mountains and the Caspian sea.

Looking at out planet from above is a profound experience. Michael Collins, Apollo 11’s resident philosopher, famously said that looking at Earth from a great distance was the strongest memory of his epic voyage, going on to add that Earth was … Continue reading

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A tent, a poplar tree and the Dubai of the steppe.

An ever-helpful airshow runs on a loop on my seat’s in-flight entertainment system as we fly high above the steppe towards Astana. A tiny Air Astana airplane flies above a map of the world painted in greens, blues and tans, … Continue reading

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A snowfall that would’ve made Bruegel proud.

It was snowing when I arrived, and it hadn’t finished yet when I left. Everything between the flights from and to Kiev – with their cargo of harmonica-playing, duty-free-vodka-guzzling men – happened under a soft blanket of falling snow. Of … Continue reading

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