Suffice to say……

The trip to Orgiva was a straight shot, 560 miles with a couple of stops for egg and chips, no mistakes from Nelly and ten hours later here I am. The weather is very hot, about 28 degrees and the house a blank canvas; white walls, walnut wood beams, dodgy electrics and a freezer that…

Thoughts from Spain

Farewell Portsmouth A week ago I turned 66 and wanted to take a different course for the coming year. Not only would I receive my pension but on a whim I had bought a house in the Sierra Nevada in a small town called Orgiva. I had a friend there who had dropped off the…

The army workshop in The Sudan 1978

By noon the sun is white hot and there's no shade. Sharp sand crystals seep into my boots, lie in creases within my buttoned jacket and find sanctuary behind the folds of my red-raw ears. I walk across the rough ground towards the engine shed where my shift is about to start. Screwing up my…

Guess who is coming to dinner

I have asked two guests for supper. I have not seen them for over a year but tonight I have them to myself. The table is polished, the silver gleams in the candle-light throwing shadows over portraits from the past who would want to join the evening. On my right I place my mother and…

My Nigerian Adventure Chapter 10

What else could have I expected? No one wanted Naira and in the fruit and food markets dollars made your buying power better. I had to try and get the group to at least trade together so we continued calling each bank. Then by posting new information on the screens gradually confidence increased and soon…

My Nigerian Adventure Chapter 9

The game on foreign exchange was about to start. For the past weeks we had been teaching about how the international markets worked coupled with some basic education on economics. We had bonded with them and spent most evenings drinking and partying. They were so excited and in the afternoons they went back to their…

My Nigerian Adventure Chapter 8

The teaching was going to plan but slowly. By the time of the second week I had a son, I had a telex from the bank in London and they assured me that all was safe with the mother and baby. As for my son’s arrival that was happy news and on telling the steward…

People are basically good.

People are basically good I believe.  Yesterday I traveled to London and as the train trundled along passing the green contoured large fields that turned into the grey suburbs of Basingstoke, the rain started to streak over the greasy windows. As we swayed in between the empty Battersea tower blocks a storm was drenching south…

My Nigerian Adventure Chapter 7

H M S Cumberland had been the guard ship off the Falklands. The war there had finished and even though there was not much appetite for further Argentinian adventures, the Royal Navy was taking no chances patrolling the channel between West Falkland and the enemy coast. She was coming home, calling at Ascension Island and…

Wales revisited

Today I drove to Wales and was worrying about the traffic and the problems on the M5, M49 and all roads that lead to Ystradfellte where I am on a course for off-road motorcycles. I needn't have at all. The start of the journey was not too bad and it was when I reached the…