One thing I love when visiting a new place is stumbling across quirky little ‘things’ – things that you’d never go out of your way to see, but which make you smile and which add to the character of a place. They could be bars or restaurants, a piece of graffiti or a particular view. They could […]

Four drawn faces studiously avoid each other’s eyes. They are gathered around a rectangular table covered by a red and white checked tablecloth; two women sit along one side and a man and a young girl sit opposite them. Each one gazes into the middle distance or, in the man’s case, determinedly into a corner.

Recently I had the pleasure of writing about some excellent films for the Bath Film Festival: Youth, Taxi Tehran and Tangerine.

She emitted a low groan and rolled over onto her side. She felt like she hadn’t slept at all. Stretching her arms above her head and yawning widely, she rotated onto her back and opened her eyes. Bleary with sleep. God, why was getting up so difficult these days? She rubbed them and then reached […]

They start around her features – faint lines clustering around her eyes, curves around the edges of her mouth, soft ridges along her cheeks – and they spread, fading slightly, around her whole face. Her face is a maze of crinkles, wrinkles and crevices. You feel like, if you could somehow take her face out […]

I love my bike. She’s a giant: a large-framed Dutch Gazelle road bike. She only has three gears, and is therefore terribly unsuited to the hilly territory of my home city. But she feels regal and she’s comfortable, and has a built-in bell and built-in dynamo lights. I only learnt to cycle as a teenager, […]

I love Italy – the food, the landscapes, the language, the history. It’s the one destination that I repeatedly go back to, and I dream of one day buying a ramshackle townhouse in the Italian countryside and slowly doing it up into a masterpiece. All this is by way of excuse for the fact that […]