Well I’ve got them at last- copies of my book Pig The Legend. They arrived yesterday but I opened them last night as I was out at cricket. The actual publication date is the 28th August (I think it is something to do with the Book Trade). So I can sell the copies I have but Book Shops might take some time to order and obtain them.(remember try to avoid ordering through Amazon as we will make almost nothing for the Alzheimer’s Society)

Will blog about this week’s Story Telling adventures sometime over the weekend.

Stories Again

Volunteered to help with stories today in Stonehouse more reading than telling. The idea was to encourage families with books/reading especially after the last 15/16 months we actually had more volunteers than families but it was the first event and from little acorns!

It was good to see some old friends that I worked with when we ran the charity managing Sure Start Children’s Centres in the area. If our Prime Minister is really serious about leveling up and not just empty soundbites he might want to to something about the way his government has allowed Sure Start to  decline over the last ten years. I still think Sure Start is the best initiative any government has implemented in my life time-it was making a difference!

Performing in Lydney Library on Wednesday morning and Kingshill House on Friday.

Stories, Stories and More Stories

Busy week looming with three days involving Story Telling and two days of cricket! Not much time for anything else! I will talk about the Story Telling through the week it is in three very different places. I will need to work on relearning them tomorrow.

I played cricket for my club Slimbridge today. Body feeling it now with a couple of bruises, as well aches and pains all over!

Breaking News

They have been printed!

My book Pig the Legend will soon be on the way to the publisher from the printers and hopefully at the end of next week I may have a copy to hold in my hand. More details early next week (remember you will be able to get it from me or can order from your local bookshop please try and avoid Amazon because we won’t make any money for . the Alzheimer’s Society)

We had an entertaining Book Club on Wednesday discussing Diary of a Nobody. We agreed that it had aged well and we all enjoyed the humour.

Finally went for a wonderful ride with my David today. I called it Two Rivers because we went alongside both the Wye and the Severn. It was about 74 miles with quite a bit of climbing and it was hot but thankfully slightly down on the past few days. The pictures below are not that flattering but difficult taking selfies and getting us both in- one is on Bigsweir Bridge over the Wye and the other is of course The Severn Bridge.! The food pictured is the honeycomb waffle I had at our coffee stop!

Under The Boardwalk

I have chosen the Drifters classic for today’s blog seems appropriate.

I went yesterday to Devon as 12th man for cricket and we came second! Although a long way to go I didn’t mind missing fielding in that heat! I was supposed to be captaining us at Worcestershire today but Covid struck their team so have cancelled all their games this week. It had to happen.

Busy with stories next week so spending some time on this today- both writing and learning old stories.

Inca Trail

Final installment today – apologies I have taken so long to finish this.

On the fourth day of our track we started our trek about 4 a.m. while it was still dark so our head torches were vital. The aim was to get to the Sun Gate before dawn breaks over Machu Picchu – it was fun and surreal making our way in the dark. Scrambling up a long flight of steps and the excitement was growing as we could see the sky gradually lighten. Once we reached the Sun Gate the view was wonderful (there were pictures in previous blogs both of the view of dawn creeping over Machu Picchu and Clare and I at the Sun Gate)

It took some time to make our way down the ruins of the city. I was surprised to see Humming birds darting around. Words can’t really do justice to the the ruins, the surrounding hillsides and that wonderful feeling of your footsteps walking back through history.



After exploring the ruins I went with a couple of others to climb Huayna Picchu (Young Peak) -it is the great rock that dominates the whole site that you see in all the pictures. It was quite a scramble, holding onto ropes in places. It was certainly not an undertaking to take if you had vertigo! The picture of me below is me on the top-you can see the Inca Trail where we descended to Machu Picchu in the background! Getting down was actually harder than climbing up and you had to have your wits about you. It was an exhilarating experience!

Finally, in a previous blog I mentioned the wonderful porters who carried tents, cooking equipment etc . A picture of them below.


(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave

Thought Martha and the Vandellas provide an appropriate title for today. It is hot especially travelling back from Sizzling Devon. Had a great time with all the family. Probably eaten too much and certainly a few too many drinks! Need to get back to doing a few miles on the bike. I am planning to cycle round the river on Friday with my eldest son Dave. (picture of him below playing cricket yesterday-he won and was not out at the end-hope his father performs this week!)

A busy spell coming up with stories to learn as outdoor gigs coming up fast!) and because it has been a while I will have to relearn my old favourites.

I promise I will try and finish off the Inca Trail this week.



Away Days!!!!

I’m not talking about football! We are currently away in Devon with all the family. Enjoying playing with my delightful grandson Owen as well as the wonderful weather! So sorry about the absence of blogs this week. I also had a great day at the cricket at Edgbaston on Tuesday.


Dead Woman’s Pass

Yesterday before the football I used my blog to talk about the start of the Inca Trail when we walked it nearly 17 years ago. Day 2 was the day everyone was dreading with the legendary Dead Woman’s Pass ahead of us, the highest point on the trail at 4,215 metres. Altitude and how we react to it was an unknown factor. Clare was feeling some trepidation as we rose early.

We knew we would have to pace ourselves carefully. We decided to have a rest fairly frequently to catch our breath. Clare was feeling the altitude as we got higher and closer to the top of the pass. We eventually got to the highest point (picture below)


We knew we had now done the hardest point and Clare loved Day 3 walking through the Cloud Forest and I enjoyed spotting the birds flitting in and out of the trees. I was blown away at lunch on Day 3 we had porters (who do a similar role to the Sherpas in the Himalayas) so they had pitched a mess tent and had lunch ready for us. The flaps of the tent were open and in all four directions I could see snow capped mountains. I decided it must be one of the most beautiful places to eat lunch in the world! The picture of me below was in an earlier blog but was looking in one direction at the lunch site. (more on Inca Trail in the future)


Finally the football was disappointing but hats off to Southgate and his impressive young team. They have restored my interest in the England team.

Three Lions

Had to be the title for today’s blog -couldn’t be anything else. I won’t spend much time on it but fingers will be firmly crossed tonight for the big match. Think it will be a tight game that could go either way.

 Inca Trail Revisited

A few words on the Inca Trail over the next two or three blogs interspersed with pictures. I have had a few other pictures in some blogs this year. I got really excited when we arrived in Cuzco the former Inca Capital, I have mentioned before how fascinated I have been by the Incas ever since I was in the play Royal Hunt of the Sun when I was at school. I was an Inca follower of the King  Atahualpa, I was one of a group  butchered in slow motion by the Spaniards! (My Mum didn’t like seeing me put to the sword) So at last after a couple of weeks travelling around Peru I was now standing in the footsteps of the Inca’s in Cuzco. I did find it bizarre when having a drink in a local bar that was adorned by football scarves to see one of my favourite football team!

After 48 hours in the city we took a short train journey to just below Kilometre 82 (the start of the trail). We were warned it might be cold and we eventually snuggled down in our tent. We discovered how cold it was in the morning when we noticed ice had formed on the inside of the tent.  A cold early morning wash and a good breakfast and we were off, climbing steadily. You can just make out the camp site in the picture below.



More reminiscing tomorrow!