Category On The Beaten Track

On The Beaten Track Extract – A Bum Note

This extract follows on from our ejection under armed guard from Yugoslavia in 1987 (click YUGOSLAVIA for this part of the notorious night). So we found ourselves back in Austria at a small border station……. The backdoor to the station was locked – oh no, you don’t say, surely not……… Thankfully the front door was open […]

Norway By Train (Part Two)

FOR PART ONE CLICK HERE My second visit in 1992 was with Hamish, the first of what were to become regular overseas trips together. For the start of the trip we were joined by our old school mate Lang with our first new destination being Bergen in Western Norway. After a couple of nights in […]

It’s A Drag…..

I have been skiing twice in my life, once in Bulgaria and once in Romania. My ski style can best be described as unique and I still bear physical and mental scars from the experiences! As both of my alpine adventures took place in Eastern Europe, I included a few paragraphs in my book On […]

Kotor, Montenegro

Lonely Planet has just proclaimed Kotor as the number one worldwide city must see in 2016. I visited in 2007 and indeed can vouch for the fact that the place is amazing. Probably the most convenient way to visit is to fly to Dubrovnik in Croatia and then take a bus ride of around a […]

When saying no is a cause for celebration……

Today is ‘Ochi’ day in Greece. Parades to mark the day that Greek PM Metaxas said a firm “No” to Mussolini have been celebrated in Greece ever since the end of WWII. I was lucky enough to see the Ochi Day Parade in Thessaloniki in 2008 and here is the relevant passage from my book […]

Wilbur Arrival By Train, Yerevan, Armenia From Batumi, Georgia

A Shameless Plug!

What can you buy for £3 nowadays? A meal deal – not bad, but gone in 3 minutes; a butterscotch latte with whipped cream – delish, but bad for your figure and gone in 10 minutes; 3 ceramic animals from Poundland for your garden – seemingly a bargain, but they would last only until such […]

Angst in Ankara Station Part II – Extract From My Book

Regular readers of this blog will recall a book extract that I published a couple of days ago about our train journey across Turkey to Syria in 2009. On that trip my travel buddy Hamish was (thankfully only temporarily) separated from his passport for a while at Ankara Station, leading to all sorts of palpitations. In 2014 […]

Angst In Ankara Station Part I – Extract From My Book

The story starts as we were travelling to Syria from Istanbul in May 2009……. Calm Before The Storm We had a 4 hour stopover in the Turkish capital so set off to explore. First we needed coins for the lockers, but were one short. Luckily an upright English teacher called Neil came to our rescue. […]

Moldovan Countryside Near Chisinau

Moldovan Arrival – An Extract From My Book

To set the scene, Hamish and I had just taken the overnight train from Bucharest to Chisinau…… Disorganised & Disorientated We arrived in the Moldovan capital in what can only be described as a severely groggy state. The hard seats had not given the most comfortable of nights and there had also been people constantly […]

On The Beaten Track – Travels In Eastern Europe

People have asked me how I found the time to write a book of over 500 pages and what compelled me to do so. The first question is easy. Much of the book was written on my daily commute to work or any other ‘dead time’ such as waiting for a bus, standing in a […]