Archive for the 'General Interest' Category

The Moon Landing Conspiracies

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

First Moon LandingJuly 20th 1969, the day ‘the eagle landed’ and Neil A. Armstrong took his famous “one small step for a man and one giant leap for mankind”, was humanity’s proudest moment—or was it? So incomprehensible was the news that we had landed a manned craft on the moon, that it temporarily brought together a world steeped in political conflict. The moon landing was born out of the space race—in itself yet another manifestation of the cold war—and it was certainly a major coup for the USA, but the sheer accomplishment of it had a profound effect on people the world over. For a brief moment, the world came to a standstill as images were beamed from the moon in a testimonial to what humans are capable of. (more…)

Montblanc, the summit of excellence

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Montblanc PenFor over a century the name Montblanc has stood for style, elegance and quality, its pens and stationary items among the best that money could buy. Though built on a classical tradition, the brand has continued to remain in vogue and is now being discovered by a whole new generation.

Today Montblanc ranks as one of the top luxury brands in the world, but as is often the case its origins are quite humble. Founded in 1908 by Claus-Johannes Voss, Alfred Nehemias and August Eberstein, the firm then known as the Simplo Filler Pen Company could count on the skills of a stationer, a banker and an engineer respectively. Moreover, this Hamburg-based company is German, not French or Swiss, as one might have deduced from the name. (more…)

No more monkey business

Sunday, February 9th, 2014

Gibraltar monkeysText & photos: Ash Bolton

They are one of Gibraltar’s most iconic and enduring symbols. Yet a number of the Rock’s famous apes will be captured and relocated abroad in the next few months. Government chiefs have been prompted to act as groups of the Barbary Macaques have been up to no good in built up areas such as schools and Main Street. According to scientists based on the British Overseas Territory, many of the monkeys have lost their fear of humans and now regard them as a source of rich food. It’s believed up to 120 of the Rock’s 230 strong monkey colony could now be deported to North Africa. (more…)

El Camino de Santiago (The Way of Saint James)

Monday, October 21st, 2013

La Cruz de FerroBy guest blogger Ash Bolton

I arrived in the small Spanish village of Roncesvalles in the north east of Spain late on a rather depressing looking Saturday evening in September, just as the skies turned dark with rain and released a torrential downpour.

Sprinting off the bus with a heavy backpack weighing me down, I ran to the municipal albergue (subsidised shelters along the Pilgrimage route) but got soaked to the bone within a minute and was already questioning whether this adventure was such a good idea. The plan had been to catch a taxi over the Pyrenees and into France, to reach the traditional starting point of the Camino Francés, Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, but a quick look for said taxi proved fruitless, so I took this as a welcome sign that fate was telling me to start here. (more…)

A voyage of discovery with Toma Tours

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

Pablo station restaurantOver the years I’ve been fortunate to see a lot of Andalucía and enjoy many of the exotic experiences that are unique to this southernmost part of Europe. So I like to think I know it pretty well, and travelling to Algeciras to hook up with a group of journalists and PR people I thought I had the measure of the press trip we were about to embark upon.

I hadn’t counted on the sheer enthusiasm and knowledge of organiser Manni Coe, the founder of Toma Tours and re-discoverer of the route we were about to follow. His detailed knowledge of southern Spain is born out of a passion for its culture, history and people that also shapes the fantastic tours he puts together. (more…)