We Are Fire — The Dance of the Devils by Michael Sealey

It is two o´clock in the morning in Calpe on the Costa Blanca. On duty at the top of the main high street is a fire engine. Waiting alongside it are six firemen prepared for action. Flame proof suits and yellow helmets; fire extinguishers to hand. Down the street, sloping between shops and apartment blocks […]

Read More…

Muerte! Muerte! by Ben Woollard

The Sevillan river water ripples by the miniature castle landmark where we gather, three of us, here now for a show we’ve heard so much about. We wander over to the arena, as it is called, some surviving relic of Roman games, a coliseum in guise by any other name. The purpose of the day […]

Read More…

The I Must Be Off! Travel Essay Contest 2014 — Results

First, thank you to everyone who entered. We had lots of entries this year, and lots of different interpretations of the travel essay. Congratulations to the following writers. And a special thanks to this year’s judge, Robin Graham. First Place “Oh, Calcutta” by Paola Fornari   Second Place “The Scarlet Mile” by Gillian Brown   […]

Read More…

City Hopping — Alicante, Spain

We’ve just returned from Alicante. I’d never really wanted to go there. You see, it is mentioned in a commercial for a low-cost airline that gives frequent flyer points at supermarkets. The TV spot shows a justifiably confused man at the check-out lane. Although he’s buying groceries, he’s also checking in to board a flight […]

Read More…

The Other Mallorca — Part III

Today William the Donkey Groomer has decided that we’ll explore the region of Serra de Tramuntana, which was named a World Heritage Site in 2011. We cover a lot of ground too–dozens of miles even. You see, we have a hiking method called “Hiking on Four Wheels,” which we employ on days after very long, […]

Read More…

The Other Mallorca — Part II

Sóller, Mallorca (Spain)We’ve decided to hike from Deiá to Sóller and back today. It won’t be less than six hours. We park the car in Deiá, a town on a ridge with a few quaint restaurants, a tiny market, the requisite church and very limited parking. We’ve driven through the “town” before, so I know […]

Read More…

The Other Mallorca — Part I

The West Coast of Mallorca (Majorca)What do you think of when you think of Mallorca? If you’re from North America or Asia, you probably never think of Mallorca at all–or you might think I’m referring to a bad whale, or maybe a whale that likes to go to the mall? While you’d get lots of […]

Read More…

Eight Days in the Canary Islands — Day 7

The Green ‘lake’ at Il Golfo (not a volcano)”Volcanoes,” I say and before Alexander the Pool Shark can ask what I mean by this, I say, “Volcanoes” again. I really want to see an active volcano. I’ve seen lots of volcanoes, and yes obviously–if you’ve noticed my picture in the header of I Must Be […]

Read More…

Five Days of Hiking on Mallorca in February — Day 5

Playa de Mellorca in winterIt’s our last day on Mallorca and we’re feeling nostalgic. Herbert the Venezuelan Pearl Diving Instructor is lying on the bed, flipping through pictures of the hikes. “Remember the rocks?” he says. “And the rocks?”Despite the fact that it’s Herbie’s job to choose the route, he hasn’t even unfolded his bed-sized […]

Read More…

Five Days of Hiking on Mallorca in February — Day 2

Hiking on Mallorca in February _____________________________________________________________ Herbert the Venezuelan Pearl Diving Instructor–do Venezuelans even pearl-dive?–was supposed to highlight the route for me so that I could better remember where we hiked. I’m still waiting for this. Herb is slacking, but onward. Forced to use the creaky facility of my sorry mind, I give you the […]

Read More…