McCormick’s farm

28 February 2014 After giving a lunchtime talk in Harrisonburg, I head south to Tazewell. As I have time off until tomorrow lunchtime the first, and most pressing action, is to get off the  I81.  An Interstate highway that roars a stinking, noisy river of trucks north and south, through the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.... Continue Reading →


25 February 2014 Roanoke will be forever etched in my memory, for all the wrong reasons. A persistent itch wakes me; it is not a mosquito, perhaps a flea? Checking the bedding brings no answer. I turn off the light, again the sting and itch. Something is biting me, right now, this instant! Resisting the urge... Continue Reading →

Lebanon Tennessee

24 February 2014 12H00 talk today in Lebanon Tennessee.  At Pats Cuntry (sic) diner. The snow has thawed, making the driving conditions more or less tolerable. This has not made a positive impression on THE CAR, which is having greater and greater difficulty getting over the mountains. On every small incline it coughs and splutters, no... Continue Reading →

Talk touring Tennessee

Random thoughts from 18 February 2014 Talk touring Tennessee. There does seem to be some sort of stigma against being poor here. But, increasingly as I look and see how people get rich today and what they are rewarded for, it makes me wonder if being ‘filthy’ rich isn't the embarrassment. Modest wealth has always... Continue Reading →

Reality check

Thoughts of the morning of February 15 2014. In the realm of thought, it really is a case of the tree doesn't fall until you witness it fall. In order for a thought  to be real to you, you have to think it. Nobody else can think it for you. Once you have thought a... Continue Reading →

Bulgaria – Sophia

Today in the European Union the concept of a border is all but lost, but here this man-made boundary is all powerful. Crossing it turns the money in my wallet into worthless paper. The language of the Serbs is reduced to strange sounds, and the driving style changes – snap – just like that. In... Continue Reading →

Let the writing begin

My physical journey, talk touring my way once around the USA , was demanding. At times my exhaustion was monstrous, both physically and mentally. No energy remained for me to attempt to also keep a running blog of my day to day adventures, let alone do justice to the many fascinating conversations I had. But,... Continue Reading →

Stalk your walk.

04h45...alarm call! Through the gap in the curtain I see the grey dawn, time to get my khakis on. Today I take my first ever bush walk; through a game reserve that prides itself on hosting the African ‘Big Five’. Jan introduces himself; it will just be the two of us on the walk this... Continue Reading →

The earth moved

T’was weird. I was sleeping 12 floors above San Francisco terra-firma when I was shaken awake . A slow motion very big, not human, shaken. My system flooded with adrenaline until it tingled. I turned on the light and watched solid walls wobble. This is not the place you want to experience the earth-shaking. I... Continue Reading →

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