The walk

Does the road wind uphill all the way? Yes, to the very end. Will the day’s journey take the whole long way? From morn to night, my friend. Christina Rossetti, ‘Uphill’ When I was on St Helena, I undertook the finest walk that I have ever experienced. This is the story of that walk. ItRead More

Eagle in a cage

None of us entirely likes the stories others tell of us. The pleasure of acknowledgment is countered by the failure of comprehension. No one ever quite gets us right. This is notably true of St Helena. Aside from the misrepresentation of the far-away island by tourists such as myself, with quick opinions based on fleetingRead More

By air

There’s a song about air travel by Flanders and Swann which never gets round to being a song at all. Available on their 1964 LP At the Drop of a Another Hat, ‘By Air’ has Michael Flanders giving a humorous preamble about the pleasures and tribulations of flying, with each well-crafted gag getting a laughterRead More

Rebuilding

A novel was published recently, Heinrich Gerlach’s Breakout at Stalingrad, which has an extraordinary history behind it. Its author fought on the German side at the Battle of Stalingrad. He was captured by the Soviets, and while imprisoned he wrote a novel about the war, the manuscript of which was confiscated. But upon his releaseRead More

Faint traces

I live close to England’s second oldest cathedral, which is a privilege. I regularly visit Rochester Cathedral, taking in a different feature each time, or just enjoying the the peculiar sense such places give of standing outside time through having witnessed so much of time’s passing. It’s a small cathedral, as English cathedrals go, andRead More