This morning, the first day of 2018, started grey, cold and wet … then the sun came out. Light bounced off droplets, fresh shoots pushed up through the moss – it was bright and wonderful, still cushioned in autumn bronze.
The Phraser will be on pause for Christmas. Here is a tiny handmade video of carol singers on a train platform. This was filmed from the bridge over the tracks so it is all a bit long-distance – a meander, caught on our commute home. 🚂Best viewed with sound.🎄🎶🎆
Barnaby Rogerson (in the white shirt) with Nigel Barley (author of The Innocent Anthropologist). The photograph was taken at the Eland Open Day in early December 2017.
The day is sunny, the bus ride easy, and the grey door is exactly where it should be. There are no signs … just a button to press, and then a set of narrow grey stairs to follow in a spiral to the top.
I climb the smooth steps and at the top a door is open. Just inside a tall, elegant, eager dog waits to say hello. Beside the dog is a slightly less-leggy man. He is, as I presume, Barnaby Rogerson, author of In Search of Ancient North Africa – a History in Six Lives, and one of the directors of Eland Publishing.
This is about an elephant that came to the streets of London in search of a little girl. It happened in 2006 and I wrote about it in 2015. It’s a tale about wonder where you least expect it … and about the power of elephants.