Do not travel here; the threat of terrorist activity is high

The clouds formed into a raging ocean frozen in time - their edges highlighted by the sun struggling to break through their density. I was nervous about where this plane was taking me, but staring at this peaceful image brought calmness to my mind. I bought a ticket from Moscow to Vladikavkaz on the advice... Continue Reading →

Living like a local on a farm in Russia

As we drove along the tapering dirt road shrouded in birch and darkness, I suddenly realised that I was travelling into the woods with a random Russian man I’d met on the internet. Sitting in the passenger seat, my body alternated between calm and anxiousness as the driver, my boss for the next week, periodically... Continue Reading →

Observations: Tran-Siberian Railway

The first thing I noticed when I struggled through the narrow door of the train, was the stale smell of sweat and piss created by the 50 or so 2-minute-noodle-eating people cooped up in the third class carriage. The stench hit my face at such force, that my chin recoiled into my neck in defence... Continue Reading →

Day 1 in Mother Russia

  Russia reminded me of Ghana and India rolled up in one. Not because of the cities or the people, but the feeling that emerged when I stepped off the plane and travelled to the first place I’d be staying in those countries. I was 19 when I first travelled overseas.  As you’d imagine, my... Continue Reading →

Observations: Golden Eagle Festival

As our van entered 2017’s Golden Eagle festival, an event I’d eagerly awaited, it was not the Kazakh eagle hunters mounted on their great (but actually quite small) stallions that first caught my eye. No. It was the hoard of western photographers, exclusively dressed in Jack Wolfe, Columbia and North Faces' newest winter collections. With... Continue Reading →

Lakes and Teepees

I didn’t think too much of it when I first met you. You were laying on the lounge playing with your phone when I walked into the common room to start cooking my dinner. Unlike most people in the hostel (and Mongolia generally), you weren’t dressed in the usual hiking gear that so many people... Continue Reading →

Seven Days in the Desert

It’s dusk, and I’m sitting on top of a rock covered mountain looking onto the Gobi Desert. The valley was not baron and dry as I’d imagined a desert to be. Instead, the cloudless blue sky dipped into mountain ranges which were once drowned by the inescapable depths of an ocean.  I tried to picture... Continue Reading →

Up in the Air

From the window seat of the plane, I stared out beyond the wing. The barren earth looked as though it had been lashed a thousand times. Its scars screaming to the sky above. The shoestring roads below seemed to lead nowhere. I couldn’t help but wonder how anyone survived in the desolate, remote land I was... Continue Reading →

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