Cities of Light

Like everyone, I am aghast at the events in Paris and Beirut. I have been grappling with whether to write anything, as there have been plenty of words and lines written since Saturday, and I’m not sure if I can add anything worthwhile. I haven’t watched the news bulletins, getting most of my information from […]

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Katrina 10

Normally Hurricane warnings in the Gulf Country don’t make news here in Australia. This one, on a Tuesday ten years ago, did, as it was rated a Category Five and heading straight for New Orleans. I watched the events unfold with interest, then horror, as the levees broke. The professional fascination lie with the catastrophic […]

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This is a fascinating piece of writing on the aftermath of MH17by one of Australia’s best journalists, Paul McGeough. In amongst the horror of the crash, McGeough and his photographer colleague Kate Geraghty collect sunflower seeds from the crash site of MH17 and arrange to give them to family members who lot loved ones in […]

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But if you write it down

Sendai memories Yesterday, I caught up with Pepi Ronalds, a freelance writer, holding a Wheeler Centre hotdesk fellowship. Pepi was in Sendai during the 3/11 earthquake, teaching English, and since then has been using her writing skills to help make sense of what happened during, and more importantly after the event. Her piece, Memories are […]

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Der Himmel Über Recovery

The good folks across the ditch at New Zealand Red Cross (Elizabeth, Jolie, Holly)  have released a guide to recovery called Leading in Recovery: A companion in chaos. This is a great little piece. And that is its beauty. It’s slight, not dense, not theory driven, not lofty, there to be a companion. Working in […]

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Red Beans and Rice

Red Beans and Rice Tonight I’m cooking Red Beans and Rice. It’s a specialty of New Orleans. Usually cooked on a Monday, washing day, and put on in the morning and cooked real slow. I learnt this from NPR, America’s great public broadcaster, when I was in Washington, in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. […]

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London Calling

A day in London, on the way to Devon to visit relatives, I managed to convince my girls that we start the day with a visit to the London Bombings memorial. Not quite what they had in mind, as they were hoping for a shopping day. It did feel a little incongruous (particularly as the […]

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I went along to the launch of Sophie Cunningham’s Warning, a great non-fiction narrative about Cyclone Tracy, which destroyed Darwin in 1974. I’ve been a fan of Sophie’s writing since her novel Geography was released. The sense of weather at it densest and sometimes extreme pervades her writing. The descriptions of summer storms in Sydney […]

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