One of the places I really wanted to visit when we were in America a couple of years ago was the atomic testing grounds about 65 miles north of Las Vegas.
Not your typical tourist trap I grant you, especially compared with the arcade machine attractions of The Strip, but then I’d rather risk radiation sickness than throw away my money at a blackjack table. Read more ›››
Long before the likes of Heston Blumenthal brought scientific method into the kitchen and Jamie Oliver churned out his endless cookery books there was Pellegrino Artusi leading the way with his book ‘La Scienza in Cucina e l’arte di Mangiare Bene’ in 1891.
Artusi was born in 1820 in Forlimpopoli in what is now the Molise region of Italy, the son of a wealthy pharmacist. He was named Pellegrino in honour of Saint Pellegrino Laziosi of Forlì. Read more ›››
The name Vasili Alexandrovich Arkhipov may not mean much to you, but you have a lot to thank him for because he has also been called the man who saved the world.
Arkhipov was born to a peasant family near Moscow in 1926. He was educated at the Pacific Higher Naval School and served on board a minesweeper in the war with Japan in 1945. Read more ›››
Not everyone I write about is well-known outside their own country, but the thing they are well-known for doing sometimes is, as is the case with Eamonn Andrews.
This is Your Life was the popular biographical programme that appeared on tv in America, Australia, New Zealand and Sweden and it it is the UK version that Andrews is best remembered… Read more ›››
For this round of ABC Wednesday, I thought I would focus on people from the past, some famous, others less so, but hopefully all interesting in one way or another.
Starting with the flamboyant 5th Earl of Angelsey, who “seems only to have existed for the purpose of giving a melancholy and unneeded illustration of the truth that a man with the finest prospects, may, by the wildest folly and extravagance, play away an uniterable life, and have lived in vain.” Read more ›››
Addo Elephant National Park was one of the highlights of our week long road trip across the south coast of Africa.
We’d read that it was 180,000 hectares in size, but hadn’t really appreciated just how huge the park was, sweeping down in a huge crescent from Darlington in the north to the Sundays River mouth on the coast… Read more ›››
Albion is the ancient name for Great Britain, although it is often use as a poetic synonym for England.
Some people are unaware of its meaning, even though it is commemorated in the names of football teams, West Bromwich Albion and Brighton and Hove Albion, churches and pubs, like the one pictured left in Hyde, near where I live. Read more ›››
A is for Abracadabra
A magical word special to me as an ankle biter after I was given a David Nixon set for my seventh or eighth birthday.
Nixon was born in 1919 and like many of his generation, he found his way into entertainment through Entertainments National Service Association in the Second World War. Read more ›››