take your seat belts off

Everyone is smiling when we get on the plane. There are no masks now, no passenger locator forms or tests and it’s a warm, sunny day and all this seems to have put everyone in a good mood. Gradually we all sit down and put on our seat belts. We’re sitting with our seat belts … Continue reading take your seat belts off

“Are we going to die, Mum?” — that night, twenty years ago.

(This story is also on Medium. Follow me here.) I remember him falling into a river and clinging to something – a leaf or a stick – to stay afloat. He was injured, scared, and all on his own. The current was sweeping him forwards and ahead he could see he was hurtling towards the … Continue reading “Are we going to die, Mum?” — that night, twenty years ago.

Watermelon for the Runner

You know those people you get in hostels who are by themselves and yet seem to be at the centre of everything? This guy seemed like that, firing off jokes to people who walked by or other people sitting around us, chatting amicably to the staff. Despite his age, he seemed to be in his element. He turned back to me and said, “well, are you gonna come and tell me about yourself or what?”