New Year’s Eve greetings from Indonesia, everyone! This time last year, I was seeing in 2014 in beautiful Granada, Spain, rugged up against a freezing cold wind and taking refuge with tapas and rioja in cozy little side-street cafes in the Albaicín. This New Year’s Eve couldn’t be more of a contrast – here I am on the tropical island of Bali, exploring jungles and volcanoes, cooling off at the end of each day from the sweltering humidity by plunging into ice-cool swimming pools, and indulging in the local Bintang (beer), just for good measure. 🙂
It’s customary at this time of year to look back, albeit momentarily, and see how it all went. It’s certainly been another busy one for me – one that, happily, has seen me having adventures in some amazing places: Zambia, Ghana, Utah, Arizona, Andalucía, Western Australia and Indonesia, to name but a few.
I’ve been to Accra and the Guinean border to film for Comic Relief, consultant-produced two documentaries funded by the UK government/DFID in Lusaka, and overseen a documentary on the 2014 Street Child World Cup (filmed in India, Brazil and Tanzania) for BT charity, The Supporter’s Club. I also managed to squeeze in a month-long trip to the States, to speak at the 2014 Overland Expo in Arizona about my motorbike adventures in Uganda, followed by a wonderful road trip through Utah, Colorado and New Mexico. I also had a very busy 6 weeks in the gorgeous seaside town of Fremantle, Western Australia, helping a very good friend set up a new business – much of which involved gutting an old Victorian terraced house and fitting it out as a North African and Mediterranean-inspired wellness centre. All in all, it’s been a busy old year!
Seeing out 2014 here in Bali, I’ve been exploring the island on both two wheels and four (the monsoon season has delivered some torrential rain, which has made motorbike travel pretty tricky!) – but I’ve also been using this time to do more work on a book that I’ve been trying to get written for about 100 years (the writers among you will know EXACTLY what that means, eh?!!). Ubud, a pretty town in the south of Bali, has proved the perfect haven for writing and I’m making headway: more news on the book in 2015!
To all those of you who’ve been following my posts this year – thank you, from my heart. I truly appreciate your interest and support and very much hope you’ll continue to follow in 2015.
And as for the year ahead? As usual, I’m going into it with no fixed plans, but with a definite mission to keep seeing the world, meeting amazing people, and working on more brilliant film projects. I hope you’ll join me for the ride!
Happy New Year, everyone – bring it on!