Some have two toes others have three but both kinds have extremely long tongues. Their flexible necks are also exceptions to the rule, enabling them to rotate their heads almost 360 degrees. Although they are land animals, they are three times faster in water, a feat guaranteed to impress no one because their ground speed … Continue reading Day of the Oxcart Driver
The Notting Hill Carnival is on this weekend, I said, shall we go? Family response was tepid. Don’t you remember the last time we were there it was so crowded we could hardly move around. Happy to be talked out of a half-hearted suggestion – I remembered the last time quite well – I searched … Continue reading Mount Obama
It was this time last summer when I crossed an international border by foot. We were on holiday in Lake Ohrid. After a morning’s wander around the grounds of a monastery on the southern shore, we started on the day’s main adventure, the few-kilometre walk from Macedonia into Albania. The woodland area led to a … Continue reading Eagle gesture
The Cupboard under the Stairs, 4 Privet Drive, Little Whinging, Surrey. The letter Harry Potter received from Hogwarts knew not just his address but also the exact location of where he lived inside it. But such pinpoint geo-tracking is no longer the preserve of witches and wizards; for the rest of us muggles, the magic … Continue reading Person from Porlock
India and the West Indies played a T20 in Guyana this week. Unless you are familiar with cricket, you wouldn’t have made much sense of the previous sentence. If you did understand it, you already know you are in a minority, probably from one of the 12 countries that take the sport seriously. There hasn’t … Continue reading Mashramani
A father and his young daughter drowned crossing the Rio Grande. Grim living conditions at detention centres. Fast track deportations. For many Central American migrants from the Northern Triangle (Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras), different tragedies lie in wait at the end of a long, desperate road to the American Dream. However further south, the Nicaraguan … Continue reading Sandinista!
My word of the week is Guoanbu. I was scanning the book reviews in the Sunday supplement when my eye caught a title called Chinese Spies. Lifting the lid on a century of Chinese espionage and its global reach, said the reviewer’s headline. Any other time, I’d have skimmed and turned the page, but with … Continue reading 50 Cent Army