News from Jupiter

Raring to go again

July 13, 2021

It’s five weeks now since I was knocked flat on my back in the street. There’s no question that this ninety-year-old carcass got severely shaken up. A fractured spine, a bruised rib, and a sprained wrist were just the recognisable consequences. I’ve been X-rayed and scanned, I’ve opioided myself for aches and pains, and I’ve wondered whether I would ever feel whole again, whether this […]

As I walked out one afternoon . . .

June 14, 2021

Aspiran, where I live now, is an old wine-growing village in the south-west of France. Estate agents call it quaint and some visitors call it Aspirin as a joke or by mistake. It’s beautiful in the way that everything down here is beautiful because it’s made of stone, with terra cotta roof tiles. Some of the buildings were intended to be beautiful, but most are […]

The Final Stretch

May 23, 2021

I have come at last to the end of “An Interrupted Life” – my life before Jupiter. It has taken me three years and I hope I haven’t taxed your patience too much. The work has been quite absorbing as I rediscovered so much I had forgotten. I also understand much better what happened and why. I am not at the end of this process, […]

A Fabulous Memory

May 11, 2021

A hundred or so people celebrating a birthday across five continents with a cake made in France and an edible decoration made in England . . . . what could possibly go wrong? Well, the people arrived on Zoom. The amazing edible motorcycle XRW 964M commissioned and, for all I know, tasted by Tiffany Coates in the West country arrived at my house on the […]

Turning Ninety

April 30, 2021

Well, tomorrow’s the day when your favourite anti-hero turns ninety. I know, it’s only a number, but for some reason we have to measure out the remorseless flow of time.   Seven years ago, in California, I had to go to a hospital in Stanford for s diagnosis of some small thing, although I was generally in rude good health, and while there I passed […]

Goodbye To All That

January 17, 2021

I am sorry for the long interruption of my interruptions. This has been a wild time for me and the country. In fact, it’s been an annus horribilis for everyone (and you can blame the Queen for introducing that fancy phrase). First I allowed myself to be swindled out of a huge amount of money, and then the house burned down on New Year’s Eve. […]

A New Year Interruption

January 5, 2021

Happy New Year to you. I hope you enjoyed the festive season and that you’re optimistic about 2021 bringing with it a positive change in our collective fortunes. Here in France, I said bon voyage to 2020 under rather unfortunate circumstances. While celebrating New Year’s Eve with a neighbour, a fire broke out in the kitchen of my partner’s beautiful place next door. We discovered […]

To bike, or not to bike

November 1, 2020

It’s been ten weeks since I asked the existential question which afflicts all of us from time to time: Is it me or the bike? Is it my state of mind that is making my bike behave badly, or is it my bike’ s bad behaviour that’s giving me the willies? Today I am happy to announce that it was the bike all along. If […]

Maybe, after Covid, Colombia doesn’t seem so dangerous any more

October 19, 2020

Mike Thomsen is a friend of mine who offers motorcycle tours from Cali in Colombia. I’d like to share my recent correspondence with him and a piece he’s written that I really like. It’s very clear and level-headed, and I recommended you read it.   Mike, It has aways bothered me that I was of so little help to you after you so kindly invited […]

Remembering Harry Evans

September 26, 2020

It came as a terrible shock to hear last Wednesday that Harry Evans had died. I suppose it seems odd to be surprised when a 92-year-old leaves the premises, but I honesty felt he would live for ever. Apart from being the greatest newspaper editor in living memory, Sir Harold Evans (to give him his full monicker) was also a good friend. Without his support […]