It's the question frequent travellers dread. "What's your favourite country?"
I never know how to answer this because how do you rate the exotic flavour of Bhutan with the sophistication of France, for example? My long-suffering mathematics teacher was forever telling me not to try to combine, algebraically speaking, my apples and pears - it's just as inadvisable with places.
So, when I look back on 2013, a year that involved travelling through nearly 20 countries it's more a matter of plucking moments from the ever-shifting kaleidoscope of places, experiences and people I've encountered. For me, the more I tour, the idea of "ticking off" the travel equivalent of notches on the bedpost, if you like, becomes far less important; it's those brief encounters and often only fleeting glimpses of other lives that become more addictive.
This collection of photographs, all taken during my travels last year, encapsulate some of those moments; experiences that for me encapsulate that compulsion, in the words of Mark Twain, to: " ... throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails ... "
The Timaru Herald