Prologue PDF Print E-mail
Written by Peter Smith   
Monday, 16 February 2009 21:00
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I've just taken early retirement from lecturing at Sheffield College and my wife Anne (Nursery Nurse) is on unpaid leave for two terms from Hillsborough Primary School. We're traveling overland to Australia on Ozbus 2 leaving on the 23rd September 07.


When does a journey start?

We intended making this journey 30 something years ago while living and working in Jersey in the Channel Islands - Anne a chambermaid and me a beach cleaner - but we came back to Sheffield to get married and then made the mistake of buying a house and settling down.

But actually I think the journey started for me even earlier in 1967 when I applied for and was given assisted passage to Australia.  On that occasion I made the mistake of spending my supposed last summer and all my savings travelling around the folk festivals of England and fell in love with our culture and my wife to be.  On this journey I'm taking both with me just to make sure there are no hitches and so .....

It's farewell to Sheffield and England
As we head for new vistas abroad
Forsaking the work and the weather
For dreams down that long ancient road

We're bound for Sydney, Australia
with no fuss, no pomp nor a band
Just the hum of a Van Hool engine
As we strike out for Van Deaman's land

From the west, Celtic shores of the Channel
To the lands of the Magyars and Huns
Past that cold, cruel road to Sarajevo
To Islam, the east and the sun

See the delights of old Constantinople
Marvel at Ysofa's great Dome
To the place of the face and the Trojans
And the far flung reaches of Rome

To the exotic world of the Persians
And its ancient capital Esfahan
Take a magical carpet care of Sinbad
Down the silk route from Shiraz to Bam

Travel on to the land of the Indus
Through the desert of Baluchistan
following the Mughal lords and their armies
Building the world of Islam

Leaving the men of silly walking
Into Sikhdom and the temple of gold
Through Delhi, onto Agra and romance
Varanasi, the Ganges and the longest journey of all

Up to Nepal and the roof of our journey
Katmandu and the last living God

A late night drive back up the Himalayas
For a Darjeeling breakfast of curry and tea,
And then the long road west to Calcutta
Before crossing the Adaman Sea

Bangkok where everything's possible
a city of street food and vices
of tuck tucks, ping pong clubs
and old men buying fresh Oriental spices

Last Updated on Monday, 27 April 2009 12:22