Internet meanderings: John Simpson’s top 10 columns

I know I’ve fan-girled over John Simpson’s travel columns in previous posts but I feel like juuust one more shouldn’t hurt.

I first came across Simpson, a 70 year old foreign correspondent and World Affairs Editor for the BBC, while paging through the South African version of British Airways High Life. It was a “Letter from Baghdad” column and when I came across it my first instinct was “merp” as I am not really one for war type articles. By some chance I ended up reading it and I’ve been hooked on his “Letter from..” columns ever since. Continue reading


Living the high life

I hate flying.

That’s a lie. The up-in-the-air part I can handle; it’s the take-off and landing that turn my stomach into a cesspit of anxiety.

Earlier this year, I experienced the worst landing of my life. As Emirates flight EK 306 approached the landing strip at the Beijing International Airport it descended down as unpleasantly as possible. When I was younger during thunder storms, I was quite the wuss. My aunt Maggie would calm me down by telling me that the big bangs were simply God rolling potatoes down the stairs. “Why would God be doing that?” I would ask. She didn’t have an answer but it soothed me none the less. During that landing it felt exactly as if the plane was one of those potatoes bouncing its way down through the smog-ridden Chinese sky.

That flight made me even more of a nervous flyer (Well, take off and land-er).

My ambition in life is to be a travel writer and travel usually involves flying (unless I’m resigned to travelling by foot, car, camel and/or boat— actually don’t even get me started on boats. That’s a whole other post). So, you may ask, how the heck do I plan on making the ‘travel’ aspect of my ‘travel writer’ plan work? Continue reading