"Wading neck deep in a swamp, your revolver is neither use nor ornament until you have had time to clean it" Mary H. Kingsley (1897)

farewells

A Freedom Of Sorts

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Tonight I pack.
Tomorrow I fly…

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Picture taken beside Loch Lomond, during my return visit to Britain


A Time For Farewells

Saying goodbye to family or friends is always a little difficult.
Saying goodbye to my first grandchild, knowing I’m unlikely to see him again for at least a year, is even more poignant.

Nine thousand miles can seem an awfully long way…

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Picture of me with my grandson taken by my daughter-in-law


An Adieu

The twilight tryst:
The separation.

“I must climb alone, dear friend:
Yours is a different path to fly.”

The nervous embrace of new, and separate, adventures:
The wry acceptance of an awkward au revoir.
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Picture taken on the seafront, Fort Cochin.


A Transition

As an old and weary year makes way for something new, Fort Cochin celebrates on the beach.

Happy crowds assemble.
Police, in high-profile but good humour, watch over events.
Fireworks, friendship, cameras, laughter, singing, and even space-restricted dancing, all play their parts.

The previous year’s “Santa Claus” is set alight:
a custom I have seen nowhere else!

Then, as the final fireworks die, an excited but tired crowd quietly fades,
like ghosts of the recently departed year.

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This celebration of memories, hopes and dreams is over.

Happy New Year!
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Pictures taken on Fort Cochin Beach at midnight, New Year’s Eve.


Departures..

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Tonight I will watch the sun set from a different angle.
Dusk should see me flying north.

If all goes to plan, by midnight I’ll be sleeping in Delhi.
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Picture taken in Fort Cochin.


In Transit

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I sit in the airport lounge.
Fragmented English memories of both failure and happiness now behind me.

The warmth, excitement and comforts of life in India await my return.

An apt metaphor of my life:

A life in transit.

A muezzin sounds its plaintive summons to prayer:

An invitation extended to all who travel light, or with heavy burdens.

My heart is touched.
But lies elsewhere.

Picture of the June sky taken in London. Those of the airport are taken from the Emirates transit lounge in Dubai.


Sunset Sailings

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Farewell To A Queen

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I watch and wait.

Watching as the sun slips down

Past the fishing nets

Into gently lapping golden waves.

Waiting for a queen of royal lineage.

 

The crowd quietens,

Then breaks into cheers.

She has appeared.


The Queen sails majestically out of harbour,

Into sunset.

And with her,

My friends…

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Photographs taken as my friends left Fort Cochin on the Queen Elizabeth yesterday and sailed off into the Arabian Sea.