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In Celebration of Paris in the Spring

In Celebration of Paris in the Spring

When you grow up in the UK, Paris is an extremely common city to visit. I’ve spent a lot of time here over the years: school trips with History of Art class to the Louvre and a sneaky visit to the top of the Eiffel Tower, covered in snow; grumpily dragging my feet three steps behind […]

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The Lo-Fi Lifestyle: Touring Europe with a Chilean Psychedelic Band

What is Life Like on a European Tour with a Chilean Psychedelic Band?

There is a giant shrimp staring down at me. Its beady black eye is the size of my head, and it feels extremely judgemental. Around its hard-shelled body falls a cornucopia of foodie abundance: a halved avocado, bulbous raspberries, a veiny sugarsnap pea, tumbling slices of lemon. Elsewhere, blue tinged butterflies perch happily on ears of […]

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Speaking London’s Language Through a Poet’s Eyes

“Did she ask for directions to Nelson Mandela?” We are standing huddled in the doorway of the Southbank Centre, right beside a sizeable bronze statue of the famous South African revolutionary’s head. The fourth member of our poetic little group hasn’t managed to find us yet. Overhead, the springtime skies are inappropriately ominous: grey, clouded and […]

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Springtime Theatrics in Hospital

Springtime Theatrics in Hospital

My dad has spent his life working in the theatre. He’s acted, directed and stage managed; written plays, sketches and pantomimes; taught students, professionals and celebrities, and even met my mother onstage (she was his leading lady, once upon a time). A fortnight ago, my dad rode to hospital in an ambulance. His fibrosis lungs […]

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I Joined London’s #WomensMarch with a Hundred Thousand Others. What’s Next?

I Joined London’s #WomensMarch with a Hundred Thousand Others. What’s Next?

“We only predicted 18,000 people today…” Sandi Toksvig’s voice echoes through the cardboard placards which fill Trafalgar Square. Faces are turned towards the sun; banners flutter below Nelson’s column, flanked by roaring bronze lions made 150 years ago. If I squint, I can see Big Ben in the distance. We are in the midst of London’s […]

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Why Life in Arezzo Really is Beautiful

From the moment I stepped inside Antonio’s small second-floor apartment, I knew I was going to like Arezzo. This jovial Italian B&B owner seemed resolved to ensure that I saw everything important in his home town, even with just eighteen hours at my disposal: so after Antonio had shown me my bedroom (complete with a view of […]

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Love, Loss and Jewellery, Eight Years On

My mum once pierced her ears with a needle and an ice cube. Well, not exactly. Mum was eighteen, travelling in the US, and it was her American friends who happily volunteered to do the piercing for her; Mum’s friend Lainey who slightly misjudged the needle’s point in Mum’s right earlobe and made the hole a few […]

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Life Above the Arctic Circle

Life Above the Arctic Circle

I woke with a start at 2.45am. The ship was pitching and rolling like a mad thing: coats on their hooks sliding back and forth across the cabin wall; the ladder at my side threatening to jump from its hinges and crash to the floor. From the bunk below, my cabin mate Helena sleepily opened our small […]

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A Pilgrim's Ode to a Camino Packing List

A Pilgrim’s Ode to a Camino Packing List

On September 12th 2015, I started walking through the city of Leon in northern Spain. For the next twenty days I walked to Santiago de Compostela, then onward to the coastal towns of Finisterre and Muxia where I arrived on October 2nd. It’s been almost a year since I set out on the Camino, and I’m starting […]

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The Day I Saw a Polar Bear

“Today, we’re entering the food chain.” Despite living on board the Quark expedition ship for a week, this was our first full day at sea. No more afternoons spent harbour-side in quaint little Norwegian towns; no more cruising past the open mouths of fjords. The ship was edging closer to predator territory, and now we had a new rulebook […]

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