oxfam & ethiopia

i wrote a piece for the obersver about my fear of flying and oxfam's development work in ethiopia and somewhat convoluted link between them.

"I have been terrified of flying for at least 20 years. I try very hard not to fly, but when I'm forced to I feel sick and frightened and angry for several weeks beforehand. I spend my time abroad thinking constantly about the inevitably fatal return journey and when I get home I suffer a mild form of PTSD in which I find even the sight of an aircraft upsetting. In the past few years my wife and our two boys have started to go on holiday without me. I console myself that I have a very modest carbon footprint, but I dream of visiting Iceland or the Canadian Rockies and increasingly I'm haunted by the idea that I'm going to find myself lying on my deathbed knowing that I've spent one life on one planet and that my cowardice has made it so much smaller..."

you can read the rest of it here.

you can read more about oxfam's work in ethiopia here.

and i hope the estimable petterick wiggers doesn't mind me borrowing his picture me and alamu kefa. you can visit his website and see his wonderful pictures of subjects far more interesting than me here.

Mark Haddon in Africa