‘I was a most unlikely traveller. Growing up in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, I had no great ambitions to travel other than to visit friends and family within a two- or three-mile radius. From the age of 11, I had to take the bus each day to the nearest grammar school, 10 miles away in Omagh. Apart from that there was an annual, one-day, bus trip to Bundoran, a small seaside town in County Donegal. That was more than enough travelling for me. At the age of 19, I had never been to Belfast or Dublin, and didn’t feel I had missed anything.
Sixty-two years later, when I sat down to write this travelogue, I realised that in the intervening years I had visited seventy-five countries and all five continents, many of the countries visited multiple times. How had I morphed from someone with little interest in travel into someone who was ready to fly off to anywhere in the world at the drop of a hat? Were the wanderlust seeds sown in my formative years or was I bitten by the travel bug after accepting an offer to represent Northern Ireland at an international conference?
I begin by trying to answer that question before going on to recount my unique experiences and perceptions, gathered from over 30 years of travel, along with insights into different countries, places and peoples. I hope you will agree that the outcome presents as a rich and illuminating read.’