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Archive for June, 2009

Travel Money: Foreign Exchange rates are negotiable

June 15th, 2009

You’ll be astonished at the variances between the rates you get at high street Foreign Exchange desks — the rate you get can even vary at the same desk! Previously, when I saw the electronic ‘current rates’ boards in a travel agent’s window, I–and the rest of the world, no doubt–have assumed that that would […]

“No, I’m not jet lagged”

June 12th, 2009

(Written at 05:00 three days after arrival in the UK.)

Half a world in a day

June 11th, 2009

Air travel is amazing, isn’t it? We’ve spent the best part of two years travelling from the UK to the Cook Islands, much of it overland through probably twenty countries including some in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australasia. In only twenty hours of in-air time (about 24 hours with changeovers) flying east, […]

Homecoming… thoughts

June 10th, 2009

If there’s one thing ten days in a monastery have taught me, it’s that all good things must come to an end. Including our round the world adventure. We’re coming back home to the UK soon, flying east of course — so that I can legitimately claim that we’ve been “around the world”! We’ve still […]

Cook Islands: Dis is my island in di sun?

June 9th, 2009

As a week-long holiday destination, the Cook Islands rates very highly. It’s the sort of place that might be featured photogenically in the colour travel section of the Evening Standard on a dreary Monday morning, designed to make the luckless commuter wish they were half a world away sitting on a this tropical island rather […]

Cook Islands: Clear water diving

June 8th, 2009

As you know, Squiffy and I are partial to a scuba dive or two. Especially when the visibility is over twenty-five metres as it is here in Rarotonga. Just look at the visibility in the photos below! (Apologies to the non-divers amongst us; take it from me, the water was really clear.) Better still, we […]

Cook Islands customer service: Relaxed island vibe or just plain tardy?

June 1st, 2009

We’ve been on the Cook Island of Rarotonga for a few days and we’re loving it. Even though I’m surrounded by shallow blue reefs, sandy beaches and coconut palm trees, my genetically-received gift allows me to find fault in even the most paradisical surrounds: The customer service on Rarotonga almost exclusively sucks. We’ve already stopped […]