Category Archives: Out and about

Plots of my forebears

Once there was a family tradition of visiting family graves on Good Friday. The day would culminate with tea with Aunt Ella and Uncle Clem at their Pitney farmhouse, the table would be laden with food. Uncle Clem would prompt … Continue reading

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Contentment under the Eiffel Tower

It is the anniversary of the opening of the Eiffel Tower. On time and under budget, the tower opened on 31st March 1889. Its presence once allowed me to eat one of the most contented lunches I ever enjoyed. “Walk … Continue reading

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Sunflowers

It was on this day in 1987 that Vincent van Gogh’s painting Sunflowers was sold for $39 million. The price paid was treble the previous record price paid for a painting. The price it might reach today is unimaginable. Vincent … Continue reading

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Useful geography

“What is the point of teaching people about things like ox-bow lakes and not teaching them about important things like ethics?” I did not like to argue. Ethics is indeed important, but shouldn’t people also learn about the environment that … Continue reading

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Stopping an invasion

Dying in 2014, he fell two years short of his hundredth birthday. Right until the end his mind was as sharp as ever, reflective, analytical, principled. A regular soldier, he had joined the British army in 1937 and had served … Continue reading

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