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I’ve not had time to post one of these for a while as I was away all of last week, concentrating on getting new pictures whilst enjoying the freedoms granted due to the easement of lockdown. As this coincided with some wonderful weather I was kept pretty busy. I’ve been back in Yorkshire since Sunday trying to catch up with all sorts of stuff that took a backseat as I was on my travels.

Being back in the office and stuck in front a screen made me appreciate having had the chance to get away. I’ve done so little travelling this past year but I count myself lucky as I’ve done more than many but right now it’s time to knuckle down and get some writing done. I’ve an article to prepare for RAIL magazine but once that’s done I’m looking forward to getting out and about again. On the 17th March hotels and B&Bs reopen in England, so I’ve been busy preparing a ‘cunning plan’ that involves cycling around some of the High Speed 2 railway construction sites in the Chilterns. The project is really ramping up so I’m keen to be able to document the work at this early stage in the same way I did with High Speed 1 from London to the Channel tunnel. Plus, being on the bike will give me a bit of exercise. OK, it’s not as exotic as cycling around India for charity, but at least I’m not expected to do 75 miles a day!

Of course I’m still trying to get through scanning my old slide archive but that’s going to be taking more of a back seat now the weather’s improving. Plus, Dawn and I have plans to get out and about too. Now I’m concentrating on ‘banking’ the scans (which I can only do at home) so that I can edit them at my leisure from wherever I am. I’ve already added another 60 plus to this gallery of my 1991-92 travel odyssey in the past few days – which brings me on to the picture of the day. I took this picture of the beautiful Thai island of Ko Phi Phi on the 20th April 1992.

The island is essentially two massive outcrops of karst rock linked by a narrow, low-lying sandbar, which is where the majority of the islands accommodation could be found. As you can see from the colour of the sea, the right hand beach is shallower whilst the left hand is deep enough for yachts, long-tailed boats and ferries from Krabi on the mainland. I spent an idyllic few days here exploring the island (this picture was taken from the viewpoint, a hot sweaty climb from the beach) and snorkelling in some of the fabulous bays around the coast.

A few years later the island were made famous as the setting for the film ‘The Beach’ which was based on the Alex Garland book. This sparked controversy due to allegations that the film crew caused a lot of damage to one of the beaches, but far worse was to come. On Boxing Day 2004 the Tsunami that devastated parts of SE Asia hit the island, killing over 1000 people. There but for the grace of God…

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