A Case of the Chefchaouen Blues

High up in the Rif mountains of Morocco, past a succession of hairpin bends and steep cliffs dropping down to nothingness, is a town that’s entirely blue. The reasons that led the community of Chefchaouen to paint every one of their buildings in the same colour aren’t entirely known for sure: some say it’s to hold back invading mosquitos, while […]

Continue Reading Comments { 7 }

The Refugee Crisis: Why Come to the Calais Camps?

I was nervous. Standing awkwardly on a patch of sloping mud below a grassy sand dune, I stared down at my hefty walking boots half covered by waterproof trousers. Opposite me stood dozens of men in a quiet line, many of their faces turned to me with vague interest. I had no idea what I […]

Continue Reading Comments { 16 }
The Refugee Crisis: Volunteering in the Calais Warehouse

The Refugee Crisis: Volunteering in the Calais Warehouse

There is French dirt from the Calais camps coating my clothes. Dust from the warehouse blurring the lenses of my glasses. The cracks in my hands are sore and dried out, and each finger has too many smudges of permanent marker to count. In seven days, I’ve become obsessed with packing cardboard boxes full of donated […]

Continue Reading Comments { 15 }
Kindness and Community on the Camino

Kindness and Community on the Camino

They say the Camino brings out the best in people. I didn’t believe them at first, but it’s true. Becoming a pilgrim means talking to, befriending and helping out others just for the sake of it. Walking the Camino turns individual people from strangers into a community – and a special one, at that. Where else would you […]

Continue Reading Comments { 18 }
A Romanian New Year's Eve in Bucharest

A Romanian New Year’s Eve in Bucharest

Imagine a city covered in snow. It sits on ladders and lamp posts, railings and rooftops, car windscreens and tree branches: inches thick, untouched and pure white. The snow quietens the streets. Vehicles are notably absent, leaving vast stretches of open tarmac. People walk more slowly to avoid slipping on the ice; their bodies get closer together, […]

Continue Reading Comments { 8 }

Searching for the Spirit of Place in Gibraltar

“You always start with the senses.” I try my best to suffocate the sound of my growling stomach. There’s a Marks and Spencers sandwich hiding in my bag, but I don’t want to grab for it and noisily interrupt the English author who’s sitting opposite me at the front of a tiny gallery space. It’s a […]

Continue Reading Comments { 7 }