Friday, 25 July 2014

The Good Things in Life

A picture says a thousand words.

You've only got to go to the |National Gallery and look at The Fighting Temeraire to see how true that is. So I thought as I have a book launch coming up a little bit of promo, coupled with some photos of other "good things" would be interesting. A bit like passing the holiday snaps around, I suppose!

So let's start with the cover of the second in The Temporal

Detective Agency stories, called Trouble With Swords. It's published on 8th August and will be available as an eBook and a paperback on both Amazon and from most good book shops.

While I'm at it, the first in the series, Leap of Faith, is still selling and very much available, so although you can still go straight into the second book, it would be great to read Leap of Faith first!

Okay, so that's the selling bit over,,,, except for the odd hint!

I mentioned the Fighting Temeraire. If I'm in London by myself and have an hour or two I almost always nip along to have a lokk at Turner's great painting. I was surprised to see that James Bond and the new Q did exactly the same in "Skyfall".

Let's look at The Gower, a 25 mile long by 2 mile wide peninsular in South Wales. I lived there for many years and love the unspoiled remoteness, beautiful beaches and cliffs. It was the main location for Leap of Faith.
When I was a teenager my cousins and I mapped every inch of Gower and gave each cave, nook, beach, valley and inlet a name.

Some of the rock shapes and caves are really strange and still have a fascination even now. The one on the left was christened The Asimptote for some reason while the one on the right is a walled up cave called Culver Hole, which in Leap of Faith features as a smugglers hiding place. 

I still go back twice a year if I can and for some years took my Cocker Spaniel, Benji, along. We walked miles every day no matter what the weather. He's a bit old for long walkies now, but I still walk him every day, even though he's 80% blind and almost totally deaf. We may not go far, and it's pretty slow, but he wags his tail and he's still my boy.

I love holidaying, whether it's ski-ing in Europe and Canada, slobbing out by the pool, or trekking in foreign countries such as Peru.
Canada is very special. For one thing they speak English! It also tends to be well below zero all day long so the snow never melts and remains lovely powder. Europe can get slushy.

I went to Peru about 10 years ago and saw most of the country which is spectacular, from Lake Titicaca to Machu Picchu. Unfortunately I didn't get to see the Naztec Lines. I was also  surprised to find that it never rains in Lima. It gets misty occasionally but it NEVER rains.

I also loved Petra, the Lost Rose City. The place is stunning, especially the entrance through a narrow canyon that opens up into the area with The Treasury, which featured in Indian Jones and the Holy Grail.

Amazingly most of Petra is in an enclosed plain that is strewn with broken pottery. There's so much that no one bothers to pick it up even though it's more than 2,000 years old.

I visited Indi many times on business, though not often was I able tosee the sites, so here are two photos taken in Bombay. The first is The Gateway to India, built for when Victoria was going o visit India. Unfortunately she never made it and it was some years before a British sovereign took the trip and walked through the Gateway.
The second photo was taken in the Bombay Yacht Club, a place that once epitomised The Raj. The building has a preservation order on it and is much as it was several decades ago. It's like going back into the 19th century. Serves great curry at lunch!

I've always been a fan of Pink Floyd and I've been to see Roger Waters' The Wall at both the O2 and Wembley Stadium. Both were spectacular.

I was a Scout Leader for 15 years. I learnt and hope taught much during that time. You soon begin to realise that not all kids are going to be brainless thugs!

Well that's it as a snap-shot as they say.
Last bit of promo therefore.

Have a look at Leap of Faith on Amazon as an eBook and paperback at

Trouble With Swords isn't officially published until 8th August, but you can buy the paperback on Amazon now at

Blog on, Dudes!


  1. You've seen some fabulous places, Richard!

    We'd want to return to Canada one day, and I'd also love to visit Petra. It must be an incredible sight.

    Great post and insight into your life!

    1. Hi Cathie,
      Many thanks. I love travelling and left out 80% of the places I've been to and things I've seen. Asia is fantastic from India round to Vietnam. The one place I never went to was Australia. Perhaps one day!
      All the best

  2. Travelling is wonderful. Of the places you mentioned, I've been to Gower, Bombay and Petra. Not bad!

    1. Have you been following me, Miriam????
      I loved Petra and could have stayed there exploring for several days, and although Machu Picchu was very impressive it's relatively modern at 400 years old. Bombay is so vibrant. But my favourite place will always be The Gower. I grew up there and as I mentioned in the blog I go back there regularly and constantly marvel at its unchanging beauty!

  3. Fascinating and colourful snapshot of your life, Richard. Hope Benji wags his tail for years to come.

  4. Lovely blog Richard. I've been to Canada (great place) and love Wales. I've always wanted to see Peru, but haven't made it there yet. Looking forward to your book launch.

  5. Lovely blog Richard. I've been to Canada (great place) and love Wales. I've always wanted to see Peru, but haven't made it there yet. Looking forward to your launch

  6. Many thanks, Teresa. There's very few countries I haven't been to at some point and I'm going to do a blog about some of my favourites soon. I'd love to go down the Nile and visit all the ancient Egyptian sites, but with the ciurrent situation that may be difficult!