I was asked what I would write in my blog. Short answer is, whatever I feel like at the time. It’s my hope this is the beginning of something I’ll keep building on the rest of my life. It will be part online journal. My interests will appear here sometimes, people I know, holidays I’m yet to take, funny little daily occurances I might like to share. I will comment sometimes on events and issues of the day, pursue causes I believe in. If I offer opinions you don’t agree with please don’t be turned away, the content will be pretty broad so there will hopefully be something else you’ll like. I’ll publish and publicise some of my writing projects here, share pictures, have some fun, entertain, and if something goes right – win your heart.

Thanks go to my wonderful friend Todd Baker for hosting this blog for me. When my birthday approached I told him you don’t have to worry about my present I already decided what you’re giving me. Poor Todd, months later he must be wondering if I’ll ever actually use the damned thing.

Mention must be made of the first post here that would have been. It was my intention to open this blog with a photo essay on the trail of English sailor and trader William Adams. In April 1600 Adams arrived in Japan with a decrepit vessel and crew and went on to live out his days there, extraordinarily becoming part of the establishment in the place. He lived in Japan during one of its great historical epochs – the transition to the Tokugawa Shogunate. Adams is the historical character who inspired James Clavell’s novel, Shogun. This brings together several of my great interests – history, Japan, fiction, travel and… buying myself a new camera. The dawn of the 17th century is an intoxicating era for a history and storytelling buff like me, Adams’s contemporaries included Shakespeare, Cervantes and Captain John Smith.

Following the terrible events in Japan this year my travel there in April couldn’t really go ahead. While areas I was travelling to were not affected by the worst of it, the nation as a whole was reeling. As desperate as my in-laws are to see their only grandson, in April everyone was still being traumatised by constant heavy aftershocks, and tremendous uncertainty and mistrust of the government about radiation levels as the news from Fukushima just kept getting worse and worse.

I will write more on the Tohoku Earthquake and tsunami and how it’s affecting people, but like my project on William Adams it will have to wait for another time.