Archive for January, 2014


Our Central America tour (6): Nicaragua

January 31st, 2014 by Roger Darlington

In 1522, the Spanish explorer Gil Gonzalez de Avila named Nicaragua after a local indian chief called Nicarao. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the British had influence over the Caribbean coast and Nicaragua became fully independent in 1838 (when it became the first country to leave the United Provinces of Central America). The Somoza […]

Posted in World current affairs | Comments (0)


Our Central America tour (5): monkeys and fumaroles

January 31st, 2014 by Roger Darlington

During the night of Wednesday/Thursday, it crashed with rain so that, in the morning, effectively the Arenal volcano had disappeared inside a low cloud base. Clearly we had been very fortunate with the weather yesterday. At 8 am, we left the Arenal Paraiso Hotel after two nights stay to head further north-east, starting by skirting […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (0)


Our Central America tour (4): another sloth, another volcano – and a zip wire!

January 30th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

On Wednesday, the group was asked to congregate in the hotel car park at 8.30 am, but we did not leave immediately because someone spotted a sloth in a nearby tree in the hotel grounds. You might think that, see one sloth and you’ve seen them all, but this was different from that of yesterday. […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (2)


Our Central America tour (3): first volcano and coffee plantation

January 29th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

On yet another cold and wet morning (appropriately enough a Monday) in this miserable British winter, Roger and Vee set the alarm for 6 am to commence their Central American tour. It took two American Airlines flights to reach the starting point in Costa Rica: one of nine and half hours from London to Dallas/Fort […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (1)


Our Central America tour (2): Costa Rica

January 28th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

Our first destination …. Costa Rica means “rich coast” in Spanish and it obtained this name from Christopher Columbus who visited the area in 1502 on his fourth and final voyage to the New World. A Spanish colony for many centuries, Costa Rica became fully independent in 1838. Costa Rica avoided the civil wars that […]

Posted in World current affairs | Comments (0)


Our Central America tour (1): introduction

January 27th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

In our life-long quest to see as much of the world as possible, our latest holiday is in Central America, having already visited North America many times (most recently in 2013) and South America (in 2001). As this is a region with which we are totally unfamiliar, before setting off we struggled to recall which […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (0)


How to travel wisely

January 26th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

I love travelling to other countries because I learn so much about other places and cultures. But there is an art to getting the most out of a trip and avoiding problems in new locations. So years ago I wrote a piece for the Life Skills section of my web site called “How To Travel […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (3)


Conversations with Catrin (12)

January 25th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

My granddaughter Catrin is now just three years old and asserting her independence. ***** As we leave her nursery, we have a battle to get her to wear her coat and later she comments: “I’m a little bit naughty – but not too much.” ***** I usually take her from nursery to one of several […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (2)


My granddaughter Catrin’s favourite piece of music

January 24th, 2014 by Roger Darlington

As I explained in this posting, before Christmas I took my granddaughter Catrin – now just three years old – to her first film, the Walt Disney animation “Frozen” [my review here]. She loved it so much that her mother has taken her to see it for a second time – this time in 3D […]

Posted in Cultural issues | Comments (0)


A review of the film “What Maisie Knew”

January 23rd, 2014 by Roger Darlington

A film that sees the action through the eyes of a six year old girl? That’s unusual and the story is very moving – and for me evocative. You can read my review of “What Maisie Knew” here.

Posted in Cultural issues | Comments (0)