Bill Johnston

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ELBOW READING IN CHINA By Bill Johnston (Article)


I gazed out from my dark hotel room into a bitterly cold "Peking"* evening.  It was February 1976 and acrid dust from countless charcoal fires hung in thick, grey clouds over the city, coating buildings, streets and people alike in a ghostly pallor. Though it would have been frowned upon, one could have shot a cannon down any of the broad boulevards surrounding Tiananmen Square and only clipped the odd cyclist. 

HITTING THE WALL IN SRI LANKA By Bill Johnston (article)

We had such high hopes for Sri Lanka and yet we've been here only five days and are already talking about leaving.  (Luckily, we cut back on our original plan to spend two months here!)  If it weren't for my Celtic parsimony and having scored two tickets from Colombo to Rome for $325 each we'd probably bail next week.

'Why?' I hear you ask.  

Frankly, I think we may have hit the wall.  As marathon travelers, I suppose it is inevitable that sooner or later we would test our endurance limit.  While we have had some great moments here, Sri Lanka has challenged us with some unexpected negative serendipity.