The Language Of Olive Oil: A Personal History

MikeachimItaly7 Comments

Ready? Bite. Your first few seconds inside a dolmadakiĀ are all-important: it’s the home of that first intense pop of freshness, a blast of rice, mint, lemon juice, pine nut and whatever else has been added to the mix. It’s probably best to ram the whole oily parcel in your mouth before you bite down, unless you’re tackling the larger variety, … Read More

An Odd Place To Be

MikeachimThe Everyday12 Comments

I’m in an odd place right now. There’s a very easy joke to make here about geography. I’m currently in the town I grew up in, Hornsea, in East Yorkshire. It is indeed an odd place, but these days I’m more sanguine about its backwater charms than I was a decade and a half ago, desperate to escape it at … Read More

Umbria: Give Me a Minute, Will You?

MikeachimItaly22 Comments

Right now, I’m lost in time. I’m stood on a hillside. Heat hisses, in a way I remember from my Cypriot childhood (aha! I’m in the Mediterranean). Everything smells fresh in a way household cleaning products never could. Somebody is picking asparagus – not out of a tin – out the ground.

All It Takes

MikeachimThe Everyday1 Comment

(2008) The voice coming over the loudspeaker is beginning to struggle. “Uh – on platform 6, the Treno Notte to Roma will be leaving in approximately…” “SHOW ME TH’WAYDA GO-OME…..CAZZ I’M TIREDANA WANNA GOHDA BED…”

Trains Lend A Sense Of Perspective

MikeachimThe Everyday19 Comments

Yes, trains certainly give you that. And there’s little more enticing than a railway track meeting the horizon. Railways, like rivers, are difficult subjects for writers because they go on and on. – Eric Newby, The Big Red Train Ride. All photos: M. Sowden 2007/2010.

Why Laura Travels

MikeachimThe Everyday8 Comments

I’m absent again. Again! Am I ever actually here? (Don’t answer. That’s a rhetorical statement, which is a literary device writers use to signify that if you criticise them, they’ll throw something heavy at you. Love, Mike).

Why Danielle Travels

MikeachimThe Everyday2 Comments

It’s midweek again, and yet again I’m elsewhere. (I’m actually writing something about an axe-wielding civil servant. Check back later, even if you’re of a nervous disposition – it’s not what you think). I may be absent (physically, mentally etc.) but don’t worry! Your eyes are in good hands.

Why Cherrye Travels

MikeachimThe Everyday3 Comments

“Why aren’t you travelling yet?” people often ask me. (Well, to be more specific they say “Oh – are you still here?”, but it’s the same question phrased differently, I feel sure).